[Guest post by DRJ]
A University of Tennessee student, the son of a State Democratic lawmaker, has been indicted in connection with the hacking of Sarah Palin’s online email account:
“David C. Kernell, 20, was indicted by a federal grand jury in Knoxville for intentionally accessing without authorization the e-mail account of Palin, the governor of Alaska and Sen. John McCain’s running mate, according to U.S. Attorney James R. Dedrick.
Dedrick said Kernell, the son of state Rep. Mike Kernell, D-Memphis, turned himself in to federal authorities today for arrest.
He is to be arraigned before U.S. Magistrate Judge C. Clifford Shirley.”
This was a stupid thing for this young man to do and could impact him for the rest of his life, but it’s hard for me to feel too sorry for him. He made a choice that he immediately regretted, which shows he knew better. And there will undoubtedly be some who will treat him as a hero. His defense fund can’t be too far behind.
UPDATE 1: Trial has been set for December.
UPDATE 2: Orin Kerr has concerns about the indictment. I’m not sure I agree with Prof. Kerr, although I don’t practice criminal law so this is just my off-the-cuff guess. It seems to me there may be multiple crimes that could be piggy-backed: If the first crime was the unauthorized intrusion into Palin’s email account, perhaps it was done in furtherance of the second crime of revealing the results of that intrusion on the internet.