Seizure-Inducing Tweet Leads To Cyberstalking Arrest

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Journalist Kurt Eichenwald is used to being attacked on Twitter, but one message he received in December went beyond the usual sparring with critics of his writing for Newsweek and other publications.

Eichenwald, who is epileptic, opened an animated GIF sent to him on Twitter by an anonymous account. The image flashed repeatedly like a strobe light over the message "you deserve a seizure for your posts," in all-caps. Eichenwald immediately suffered a seizure.

Last week the FBI said it had arrested the man who sent the message, John Rayne Rivello. He is charged with criminal cyberstalking with the intent to kill or cause bodily harm. On Monday the Dallas County District Attorney's office also charged him with felony assault with a hate crime enhancement.

Here & Now's Robin Young discusses the case with Eichenwald's attorney, Steve Lieberman. Lieberman, who is with the law firm Rothwell Figg (@RothwellFiggIP), has represented NPR in past legal disputes.

This segment aired on March 21, 2017.



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