Angry Little Punk: Dem Staffer Who Doxxed GOP Senators During Kavanaugh Fight Is Going To Prison

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Posted: Jun 20, 2019 2:20 PM
Angry Little Punk: Dem Staffer Who Doxxed GOP Senators During Kavanaugh Fight Is Going To Prison

Source: AP Photo/Andrew Harnik, File, Pool

The Supreme Court fight over the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh was brutal. It was vicious. It was everything that politics is at heart: warfare. We are a nation of blue states and red states. There are Democrats and Republicans. There are liberals and conservatives. We don’t get along. We don’t like each other. And we share absolutely nothing in common. Our differences cannot be bridged. Our views of government cannot be reconciled. That was explicitly displayed as the Democrats tried to execute one of the most destructive character assassination attempts since Clarence Thomas. And the ammunition they used for this political assassination attempt was the equivalent of a .308 Winchester round: sexual assault. Most of the allegations couldn’t be corroborated. Most of them were trash. In reality, you need solid evidence, witnesses, etc., but Democrats decided to take the ‘belief is evidence’ route. That’s precisely wrong.

Throughout the battle, Republican senators were doxxed by a former aide to Sen. Maggie Hassan (D-NH) who was sentenced to four years in jail for releasing their personal information. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT), and Mike Lee (R-UT) were targeted in the doxxing scheme. It was the largest data breach in the Senate’s history (via Politico):

A former aide to Sen. Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.) was sentenced to four years in prison Wednesday for hacking Senate computers and releasing personal information online about five Republican senators out of anger spurred by their roles in the confirmation hearings for Justice Brett Kavanaugh.

U.S. District Court Judge Thomas Hogan said the sentence for Jackson Cosko, 27, was needed to send a signal that criminal harassment driven by political motives would be punished severely in an era marked by extreme political polarization.

[…]

In April, Cosko pleaded guilty to five felonies, admitting that after being fired last year from his work as a systems administrator on Hassan’s staff, he repeatedly used a colleague’s key to enter the office, install keylogging equipment that stole work and personal email passwords, and downloaded a massive trove of data from Senate systems.

[…]

Shortly before the sentence was handed down, Cosko stood at a courtroom lectern and apologized.

“I take full and complete responsibility for my actions,” he said. “I am embarrassed and ashamed for what I did.”

[…]

Prosecutor Demian Ahn said Cosko’s actions amounted to “the largest data breach in Senate history.”

Law and Crime described Cosko pretty much as an angry little punk, who thought these senators “deserved it.” Cosko was fired from Sen. Maggie Hassan’s Office in May of 2018. He started by copying network drives from Hassan’s office through repeated burglary into the office. The Kavanaugh hearings set up another round of anger from Cosko that led to the doxxing (via Law and Crime):

The government said that after Cosko was fired from Hassan’s office in May 2018 for “performance-related reasons,” an “indignant” Cosko was driven by “anger” to launch an “extensive computer fraud and data theft scheme that he carried out by repeatedly burglarizing Senator Hassan’s Office.”

“The defendant ultimately copied entire network drives, sorted and organized sensitive data, and explored ways to use that data to his benefit,” the government said.

[…]

Prosecutors again said that Cosko “became angry” on September 27, 2018, while watching the Kavanaugh hearings on TV, an ended up “maliciously publishing the personal home addresses and telephone numbers of Senators Lindsay Graham, Orrin Hatch, and Mike Lee.”

Cosko’s intention, the government said, was to “intimidate the Senators, and with the knowledge and intent that others who learned of the information would then use the information to intimidate the three aforementioned Senators, as well as members of their immediate families, by using the information that the defendant had now made public.”

[…]

“Witness 4” in the case would tell prosecutors that Cosko believed the effects of his doxxing were “really funny.”

So, Cosko is toast, as is his apparent accomplice, Samantha Deforest-Davis, who was also served as an aide to Hassan, who loaned Cosko her key to the office and agreed to wipe away his prints from the computers:

 Samantha Deforest-Davis, was charged with two misdemeanors stemming from the same scheme: aiding a computer fraud and evidence tampering. She is expected to plead guilty to the two misdemeanor charges, a person familiar with the case said.

Deforest-Davis worked as a staff assistant in Hassan’s office from April 2017 until last December, when she was fired over her involvement in Cosko’s scheme, a Senate aide said.

Prosecutors say that after Cosko was fired from Hassan’s office last year, he used Deforest-Davis’s keys to repeatedly return to the office, copy dozens of gigabytes of sensitive data, and install sophisticated keyloggers that captured the work and personal computer passwords of Hassan staffers as they logged in.

Prosecutors say Deforest-Davis didn’t give Cosko permission to use her keys the first time he surreptitiously entered Hassan’s office, but the colleague later agreed to loan Cosko her office key and agreed to “wipe down” computers in the office to erase traces of Cosko’s fingerprints. Deforest-Davis and Cosko had a “close relationship” and she also owed borrowed money from Cosko to pay her rent, court papers say.

Both of these clowns get what they deserve. Oh, and it's now Justice Kavanaugh.

Jackson Cosko sentencing memo by on Scribd