A parent's thirst for revenge against the assistant principal at his son's school has landed him in trouble. Robert Dale Esparza was convicted of ID and online fraud after he set up a porn profile for the principal he accused of taking his son's iPod
AZCentral reports that Robert Dale Esparza Jr., 34, was angry that the school assistant principal, Frank Hendricsen, confiscated the iPod of his son at Gateway Pointe Elementary School, Higley District, Arizona, last year.
According to Dennis Ogorchock, detective with the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office Computer Crimes Unit, Hendricsen, who is now the interim principal, denied taking the iPod. The iPod was never found, but Esparza continued to believe that Hendricsen took the iPod from his son.
Ogorchock said Esparza soon conceived of an ingenious way of retaliating against the principal for his alleged offense. He started a fake profile for the principal on a pornographic website under Hendricsen's name in May 2011. According to AZCentral, the profile used Hendericsen's photos from the school website and included a picture of Hendricsen's wife.
Esparza, according to Gizmodo, posted obscene photos that were supposed to be Hendricsen's and attached more than 20 pornographic videos to the principal's profile. Still thirsting for revenge, he engaged in steamy chat sessions on the porn site under Hendricsen's name and even started an email address under the same name. Gizmodo explains that Esparza's aim was to make sure that anybody doing a Google search of Hendricsen's name online will would uncover an eye popping mass of prurient online activities connected to Hendricsen's name.
Ogorchock said: "I'm sure this guy (Esparza) felt that it was funny, thought it was a joke. He definitely could have damaged this guy's (Hendricsen's) reputation and his job prospects."
AZCentral reports that Hendricsen declined comment on the case and referred inquiries to District Superintendent Denise Birdwell. Birdwell said: "I think the police did a good job at their investigation. There are other ways to handle things when parents are disgruntled. We're here to speak to parents when they feel their children have not been dealt with appropriately. This is unusual, inappropriate and sad that this happened."
The profile was discovered in June 2011, when Hendricsen was taking an interview for position of principal at a school in another Arizona school district. According to Birdwell, one of the district parents searched for Hendricsen's name online and found his evidence of his "other life."
MSN reports the district immediately withdrew Hendricsen's job offer. But Birdwell said: "To our benefit, we were looking for a principal internally and (eventually) promoted him as principal. We were happy to retain him because he's very, very good." Birdwell said that the porn site helped to get the "profile" removed.
Esparza was traced through his IP address. AZCentral reports Esparza worked for Safeguard, a local home security company that said Esparza no longer works for them. Birdwell said the police concluded that the profile and chats were the work of Esparza because: "At 13, it didn't seem possible for the son to be writing the things that were written on there. Esparza then admitted he had done it all and said he was doing it just to slander him (Hendricsen)."
MSN reports a jury convicted Esparza of two felonies, identity theft and computer fraud. Sentencing has been set for June 5 and according to Ogorchock, Esparza is "looking at some jail time."
Esparza, according to AZCentral, has no previous criminal record.