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19-year-old in Pa. jailed for hacking

March 09, 2000|By DON AINES

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. - A Chambersburg man who pleaded guilty to hacking into an Internet provider's system will have to wear an electronic monitor as part of his sentence.

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Travis Lee Turner, 19, of 792 Cleveland Ave., was sentenced Wednesday in Franklin County Court to two days in the county prison and 28 days on an electronic monitor. He pleaded guilty Feb. 2 to illegal use of a computer, a first-degree misdemeanor.

Pennsylvania State Police records said Turner had applied for a job at Innernet last year, but was not hired. The report said Turner told police he hacked into the system because he "wanted to show Innernet their system weaknesses."

"He wanted to show his value to the company," court records state.

"He submitted a resume. ... We didn't bring him in for an interview at all," Innernet Vice President Shane Snively said Wednesday night. Police charged Turner last year after Snively told them someone was stealing accounts and using them to access the Internet.

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Snively said the company has provided technical assistance to the police on computer-related crimes, specifically with the State Police Electronic Crimes Investigation unit at the Chambersburg barracks.

Snively said when they realized someone was using the system illegally last fall, Innernet was able to use its own tracking and monitoring systems to help police.

Turner's mother, Yolanda Turner, 41, of Greencastle, Pa., is charged with illegal use of a computer, according to court records. Her case is scheduled for the May trial term.

"Many people think they are anonymous when they are on the Net," Innernet President Nathan Rotz said.

Turner cracked the "minimum level of security" for the company's system, Rotz said. Snively likened the breach to "making a prank call."

Snively said the breach was nothing "that could have threatened our customers or our corporate structure."

A third-degree felony count of illegal use of a computer and a theft of services charge were dropped as part of Travis Turner's plea agreement, according to the Franklin County District Attorney's Office.

Judge John R. Walker also placed Turner on probation for two years, fined him $500 and ordered restitution of $90 to Innernet.

Police seized two computers from Yolanda Turner and three from her son during the investigation, according to court records.

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