Good riddance

Ex-cop sentenced for terrifying harassment of eBay critics involving dead pig


The number of months in jail an ex-eBay security supervisor will face for his targeted harassment campaign.



Remember that bizarre, horrifying story from a little over a year ago of eBay security employees stalking and harassing a Massachusetts couple for writing a newsletter critical of the online retailer and auction company? You know — the one involving a dead, bloody fetal pig, thematically similar Halloween mask, and box of live cockroaches, all overseen by an ex-police captain? Sure, now you do. And, on the off chance you somehow missed that nightmare-fuel on its first news cycle... well... we’re sincerely sorry you had to learn about it this way.

Anywho! Philip Cooke, the aforementioned supervisor of security operations and former cop from San Jose, California, was satisfyingly sentenced to 18 months in prison, one year of house arrest, two additional years of probation, 100 hours of community service, and a $15,000 fine earlier this week for his role in the cyberstalking campaign. As BBC notes, Judge Allison Burroughs described the case she oversaw as “abominable,” adding, “It's almost unfathomable to me... I'm not sure if I saw it on television I would find it believable."

Six others involved in the awfulness currently are either awaiting sentencing or trials, one of whom reportedly was also once a police captain. A few rotten apples, right? We eagerly await each additional sentencing as they come, and wish the Massachusetts couple who suffered throughout this all the best. Let us know if you need a writing gig.

A three-part plan — Not only was Cooke and his conspirators’ project almost incomprehensibly heinous; it was pretty damn intricate, too. In its official statement, the DoJ notes that the entire plan was organized within three intensifying phases. Part one entailed mailing the couple items like the dead pig and cockroaches, while part two involved targeted online harassment and even doxxing. Part three — and here’s where things get somehow even more terrible — involved one of the planners stepping in on behalf of eBay to help “solve” the issues “in an effort to promote goodwill towards eBay.” Like... that’s just an entirely new level of villainous, if you ask us.

It’s almost as if there’s a problem with our police — Given the fact that two of the seven people implicated in the eBay scandal were former cops, one could be forgiven for thinking our law enforcement industry could foster some seriously unhinged, shady behavior. Well, that and the whole obsession with invasive, privacy-violating dystopian tech toys...