A 55-year-old man was sentenced to 18 months probation and one day in jail for creating a fake Facebook profile to accuse his estranged wife’s boyfriend of being a molester.
Authorities say the man allegedly responsible, Joseph Robert Weeks, created a Facebook profile in December 2014 using a fake name. He then began posting claims about his ex’s boyfriend, Philip Ferrier, saying that Ferrier had molested a woman. Weeks also posted about Ferrier’s troubled-and-true legal history, including prior convictions for indecent exposure. However, the court still ruled in Ferrier’s favor.
“This Facebook post was an allegation of molestation of a female and attempted abduction; this went viral,” he said. “… It was malicious. It went on for a long time. The defendant himself contacted me and said, ‘Hey, I feel sorry for ya. I know how it feels. I’d like to help you out,’ and come to find out it was him behind it the whole time. … Once it’s out there, it’s there.”
Even though neither individual involved with this case is necessarily a saint, it’s still obvious that Weeks’ crossed a line by blasting false information about Ferrier into the world. While it may seem like a petty dispute, there’s a reason this sort of thing should be considered a crime: information posted on the Internet never truly goes away.