Can You Help?

I am deeply indebted to many people for their support as friends, sleuths, teachers and much more, throughout this nightmare. I truly wish I could publicly acknowledge some of their contributions. Unfortunately, just agreeing with me in newsgroups has been enough for Hillyard to target some people for retaliation, so naming them here would be like painting a fluorescent bullseye for him. You know who you are, though, so please know that you have my sincerest appreciation. At least I can thank Colin Hatcher of the CyberAngels and Jayne Hitchcock, president of Working to Halt Online Abuse, publicly.

I appreciate any information anyone can mail to me any posts forged in my name, posts or web pages referring to me, or any individual in any chat venue (IRC or other) impersonating me. IRC logs and copies of posts with full headers intact would be very helpful. Copies of any relevant web pages would also be appreciated. Screen captures showing them at the original URL would be even better. Sightings of any activity by Hillyard on the Internet, whether pertaining to us or not, are useful in finding the various accounts he's using to hide his tracks.

Information about any reposting of pictures with my email address to any newsgroup, website or BBS would be most helpful. The pornography that was doctored with my email address has been recirculated by "collectors" and while I don't honestly care what someone does with such pictures, I do ask that my email address be edited out of them.

If anyone has the resources to get copies of documents pertaining to Hillyard's criminal record in Florida (those legally available to the public, of course!) or elsewhere, I'd very much appreciate them. While the Gwinnett and Dekalb county records are easily accessible to me, records in another state are more difficult. He has repeatedly denied being convicted for his various crimes, and having the actual records gives my claims to the contrary much more impact.

I urge everyone who uses the Internet to lobby to see that crimes committed on the net are treated with the same seriousness as crimes committed in any other forum where people interact. I'm not advocating censorship—in fact, I am absolutely opposed to it. I was a member of Families Against Internet Censorship, and I participated in the fight against the Communications Decency Act, as there was no need for that poorly written legislation. What we do need are precedents that treat threats made in email the same as threats made via snail mail. We need our law enforcement and judicial officials to be educated about the Internet—too few of them have the least understanding of how it works. If you wish to see the Internet continue to grow as a marvelous tool for communication and collaboration, you have a personal interest in seeing criminals like Richard Hillyard punished as they deserve.