This afternoon I was served notice of a hearing on a petition for injunction for protection against stalking. The petitioner is Helen Pearce.
First, let’s dispense with the obvious: The State of Florida defines cyberstalking as engaging “in a course of conduct to communicate, or to cause to be communicated, words, images, or language by or through the use of electronic mail or electronic communication, directed at a specific person, causing substantial emotional distress to that person and serving no legitimate purpose.”
I can’t control the emotional effect that anything I post on the internet will have on someone. But I can tell you what the legitimate purpose of these posts about Helen Pearce is: To inform the public about the actions of a person known to the State of Florida to be committing felonies that deprive her victims of money, homes, and peace of mind; to support the efforts of victims of said felon to bring her to justice; and to serve as a point of communication between interested and victimized parties to her crimes.
So I’m not “cyberstalking”.
Helen Confesses to Committing Felonies
Here’s a link to the pertinent section of Helen’s complaint: 2014-02-24 Pearce-v-Rairdin Complaint
In this complaint, Helen claims that she and I “first became acquainted with each other a year ago”. She says that she inquired about a home we had for sale, but did not make an offer.
Now, about a year ago I was contacted by one JJ Pierce of Flat Stone Capital LLC, not Helen Pearce. However, I’m willing to stipulate Helen’s assertion that she is, in fact, JJ Pierce who contacted me on behalf of Flat Stone Capital LLC.
Let’s pause for a moment and consider the implications of that statement: Helen is admitting in a sworn statement, under penalty of perjury, that she used the alias “JJ Pierce” to contact me on behalf of a company that she fraudulently established for the purpose of escaping detection and committing fraud. She did this just three years after having been arrested for doing the same thing. (She was arrested on fraud charges in 2011 for crimes committed in 2006.)
The night before I was served, Doug was served a similar notice. In the complaint he received, Helen states that her company site is FSCEHomes.com. The people we’re working with whose homes were listed on FSCEHomes.com have contracts with Ferin Caffrey, not Helen Pearce. Ferin Caffrey registered the company FSC Endeavors LLC with the State of Florida using a UPS Store as both its principal address and registered office. So by virtue of her sworn statement in the petition for an injunction against Doug, Helen confesses under penalty of perjury to being the fictitious person Ferin Caffrey, who registered FSC Endeavors LLC using false information, which is a third-class felony in Florida.
The website for FSC Endeavors LLC was registered using Matt’s name. Helen’s sworn statement thus implicates Matt in her felonies.
False and Confusing (But Still False) Statements
She goes on to cite “the incident that caused [her] to report it to the Sheriff Department”. She includes a screen shot of this “incident”. It appears someone posted a link to a video on some TV station website. That wasn’t me. Furthermore, it would be very easy to fake something like that. For example, [this is Helen and I just deleted Craig’s example of faking the identity of someone in a post on the Web]. See? Easy.
Helen introduces someone named “Doug” into a complaint presumably about me. Obviously, I know to which “Doug” she is referring. But Doug’s actions don’t have anything to do with whether or not I am cyberstalking her. She claims that Doug mentioned he found her Facebook page and says something about a DCF investigation. None of these claims are related to me. Anyone could have found Helen’s Facebook page (before she removed it), and if Doug, in fact, contacted DCF that was his doing and I had nothing to do with it. I report on Doug’s actions here; I don’t direct him to do things nor does he consult with me before he acts. Similarly, I report on what Helen does here; I don’t tell her what to do nor does she ask for my advice before she registers an LLC using an alias. I have never reported here that Doug contacted DCF.
Helen makes claims about what she’s seen on this blog:
- How I track her
- Where she frequently goes
- Her and Matt’s names
- Pictures that are copywrited [sic]
- Boasts of being related to different government branches
- Encouragement for others to join in
She finds all of these to be malicious, slander, and libel and make her feel threatened, defamed, and fearful.
I have posted a description of how I tracked down information about Helen. I have never “tracked” her. I don’t know where she is or what she is doing right now and have no way of knowing that.
Similarly, I have never posted where she frequently goes.
I have posted some of her previous addresses that are part of public records in order to show connections between her multiple aliases. I have never posted her current address.
I believe the photos I have used are in the public domain, are used with permission, or are “fair use” under copyright law. I have never received an assertion of what Helen calls “copywrite” but I would’ve responded appropriately if I had. In fact, I’m removing photos from my site today to which I think she might be referring in order to avoid all question. The photos were never what the articles were about; they just added color to a bunch of text.
I have never claimed to have been employed by or “related to” different government branches.
So of these, I have explained some of how I have tracked information about her for the purpose of showing how JJ Pierce, Julie Bell, Neleha K. Dun, and all of her other aliases really are Helen Joanne Pearce. She has confirmed now that my conclusions were true. I have published Helen and Matt’s names for the purpose of warning others who might fall into their scam and to assist those who have cause to bring charges against her for fraud. I have encouraged others to help us find out more about her for the purpose of bringing her to justice. None of these things constitute “cyberstalking”. And furthermore, I have not published anything “too personal”, such as her home address, names of her children, etc. even if someone brought that information to my attention at my request.
Specifically, I do not wish harm on anyone nor do I incite others to do so. I have not written anything malicious. Similarly I haven’t threatened anyone with harm.
The words slander, libel, and defamation all kind of mean the same thing. They all require that a statement be made that is provably false. I have not made any provably false statement about Helen or Matt, and more importantly, she has not cited any examples of provably false statements that would constitute slander. She makes the claim that she has been slandered and threatened, but she doesn’t explain how.
The sum of all this is that she has no reason to be fearful. She hasn’t given any examples of maliciousness, slander, or threats. Any fear she has does not come from anything I’ve said here or elsewhere. As proof of her lack of fearfulness, she did not request protection for her children nor did she provide information about where they go to school so that I could be barred from going there. She did not request any protection for Matt. When my lawyer asked to delay my hearing to give him time to prepare a defense, the judge asked Helen if she would agree to a six-week delay, and Helen answered in the affirmative. She clearly does not feel that I am an imminent threat. She is not acting like a person who is in fear.
She did ask that I be restricted from being near an address in Oklahoma and another address in Texas that is unfamiliar to me. I have never had contact with the people at the address in Oklahoma (though I know who they are) nor with whoever is at the address in Texas.
Helen states that the majority of my home page is now dedicated to Helen (suddenly speaking of herself in the third person, suggesting someone else actually wrote her statement). This is both false and irrelevant. Helen-related content as of the date of her complaint was slightly less than half according to the word count. The reason it’s there at all is that interest in Helen from law enforcement, the media, and victims has been heating up lately, and since the Helen-related content of the blog is minimal (only about 14% of the total articles as of the date of the complaint), it can be hard to find. [Furthermore, as of the date this post was written, all Helen-related content was categorized as “Miscellaneous” on this site, further adding to the difficulty locating that information. I’ve since moved her stuff into a “Real Estate” category.]
Helen complains that an entire page on my site is dedicated to sending “them” (i.e. me) reports of information anyone can find about her. She doesn’t say which page this is, but I suspect she refers to the victim report form that was placed here at the request of Osceola County law enforcement so that more people can report to the Sheriff the details of Helen’s crimes. That information does not go to me.
She complains about my Cockroach Tracker™ app, which she claims “tracks all of us” (though she is the only petitioner so I don’t know who “us” is) so that I can find “more information … to share and use to twist to his harassing behavior”. As I described on the site, Cockroach Tracker examines public databases looking for patterns that will help us find her aliases and false companies, which can be difficult because she’s been committing felonies a lot longer than I’ve been researching her crimes. It doesn’t track anyone else in “us”, whoever “us” is and it doesn’t “track” as in telling me her physical location. It only tells me if she starts a new company and starts contacting other victims under a new alias.
She claims I contacted her through her “work website” on three occasions but doesn’t say what website that is. I have never posted those messages claiming to be Helen’s parents, sister, or Matthew’s parents. And as she implies here, it is very easy for someone to pretend to be someone else when posting messages through contact forms. It would be just as easy for her to pretend to be her parents, sister, or in-laws in order to frame someone else as it would be for that person to actually do it. But what I can say for sure is, that wasn’t me.
She claims I have publicly posted on craigslist about her. She cites no examples. She says I make deceitful and false claims but she does not say what those claims are or proving that they’re false. In any case, I have never posted anything about Helen, true or false, on craigslist.
I did “boast” of finding Matt’s running route. Matt posts it publicly on his public Twitter feed. He stopped posting it a little over two years ago, so what I have is a couple years old. It was interesting to find because it validated that the address we found for her — which was difficult to find since she forms her false companies under false addresses. I did not post a map of Matt’s running route. I’ve never threatened to find and harm Matt, nor have I ever suggested anyone else do likewise. In fact, I’ve suggested that people avoid him since he is a body builder and has a documented history of violence. I’m more afraid of Matt than he should be of me.
We do not have a “team that is working together to cyberstalk and cyberbully”. We do have a team that is working together to bring a known felon to justice.
She cites a particular hotmail.com email address as being mine. It is not.
She claims I “invite hate”. I do not. I do invite victims of Helen’s crimes to contact me so I can help them get involved in bringing her to justice.
She claims I have “made [her] family and [her] a target” but does not cite examples, nor does she say what I’ve made them a target for. Pies? Prayer? Injunctions?
She worries about others acting out of hate but cites no examples of my incitation to hate or malice.
The Version of Craig that Lives in Helen’s Mind is Not Me
I have never threatened Helen nor any member of her family with any harm.
I know a lot more than I have posted. I know where she lives. I know her children’s names. I know her parents names and where they live. I have a copy of a screenshot of Matt’s running route. I know Helen’s maiden name and where she went to school. I believe I could publish some of this information and it would still not be “cyberstalking” but I have never wanted to be close to that line. Posting that information isn’t relevant to my investigation.
I have never posted anything here that I did not believe was provably true. I have not posted anything that was not available from public sources. That is, I have never personally followed Helen around, hired an investigator to do the same, or snooped on her friends or family to develop information that could only be discovered by subterfuge.
I live some 1300 miles from Helen. But from January 2-10, 2015, I was vacationing with my family at Walt Disney World, just a few minutes from Helen’s home. I did not drive by her house. I didn’t try to contact her. I didn’t even stop by the UPS Store at 52 Riley Rd where she claims to have an office. If I was stalking someone, it sure seems like I would jump at the chance to look her up while I was in the neighborhood.
So it boils down to this: In her petition to the court, Helen confesses to committing multiple felonies and implicates her husband in the crimes. She does not cite any examples of anything on this site that she sees as threatening. The only accurate statements in her petition are these: (1) We first became acquainted about a year ago (when she was posing as JJ Pierce); (2) she inquired about but did not make an offer on my house; and (3) I have published her and her husband’s names.
It is true that I have “no dog in this race”. I do have an intense sense of justice, though, and it bothers me that criminals like Helen can walk around free, stealing money from innocent people, living in an upscale, gated community with a private health club, driving a nice car, and living high on the hog while the rest of us have to work hard for what we have. So I’ve donated my time and space both here on this site and at www.fsboscam.com to help those who are victims of Helen’s scam to organize and get some justice. And I’ve spent more than you want to know to defend myself against Helen’s specious claims and frivolous charge of “cyberstalking”.
And now it looks like I’ll get to make another trip to Florida. Helen has never shown up in court for any of the other cases she has instigated, so I don’t suppose I’ll get to meet her.
March 3, 2015
I decided to send my High Priced Lawyer in my place because I can’t afford to lose the 3-5 days of work it would cost me to go to Florida and defend myself against this frivolous abuse of the legal system. He was able to get the hearing reset to April 14. The only bad thing about that is that it’s the day I normally meet with my tax accountant to get started on my tax return. Darn!
I take some solace in the fact that the judge doesn’t think delaying the hearing for six weeks will put Helen at any more risk of immediate danger, and she’s right. Since I’ve never threatened Helen or her family, nor have I even met any of them or talked to anyone in her extended family, she’s in no more danger from me today or six weeks from now than she was when she filed a false complaint with the Sheriff and perjured herself in her petition for an injunction last month.
April 14, 2015
I participated in the hearing today via telephone. My lawyer had previously filed a motion to dismiss for lack of jurisdiction, and the hearing for that motion was scheduled to take place before the hearing on Helen’s petition.
Helen and I were sworn in. Judge Diana Tennis asked me where I live. I said, “Marion, Iowa”. She asked how long I had lived in Iowa, and I said “All my life.” She asked if I had ever been a resident of Florida, and I said, “No”.
The judge pointed out to Helen that I had filed a motion to dismiss based on a lack of personal jurisdiction. That is, we claimed that the court did not have any authority over me, since I’m not a resident of Florida. She asked Helen if she had any legal basis for asking the court to exercise long-arm jurisdiction. Helen wasn’t represented by counsel and apparently hadn’t even read the Wikipedia article on “jurisdiction”, or she would’ve known that she couldn’t answer that question. Long-arm jurisdiction would’ve required her to show that I had some kind of minimal connection to Florida (such as a time-share, vacation home, business office, bank account, etc.), but I don’t. She could have also argued that there was some compelling interest for the state to bypass its normal relationship with other states and usurp Iowa’s authority, but there isn’t. Instead, Helen said it was pretty much like her case against Doug in February; that I had been cyberstalking and cyberbullying her online.
The judge asked my attorney if he had anything to add. He said the court had “absolutely no basis for personal jurisdiction” and furthermore had no subject matter jurisdiction in this case, explaining that I live in Iowa, that none of the alleged acts took place in Florida, and that I had been served in Iowa. He told the court that I had been in Florida recently, but that there was no allegation that I had acted on any of these matters while there. He explained that Helen had the option to charge me in Iowa, where a court would have jurisdiction.
The judge said that many professional lawyers don’t understand the difference between subject matter and personal jurisdiction. This worried me at first because I thought she was talking to my attorney. But she went on to say that, given this fact, she couldn’t expect Helen to understand it. She explained that even if the court could legally deal with the subject matter, that it did not have the power to drag someone from another state into court unless they were served while in Florida. As a result, she simply didn’t have the power to issue the injunction.
Helen asked if she could ask a question, and the judge said yes. Helen explained that the case involved her children and threats against them, just like her case against Doug Hill. She said that DCF was called and implied that I was involved in that. She asked if that made any difference.
The judge said it didn’t matter. First, the injunction was not sought on behalf of the children. In her complaint, Helen claimed that I was threatening her children. But as the judge reminded her, when given the opportunity to name her children in the petition and seek an injunction on their behalf, she chose not to. So no injunction had been sought on behalf of her children. Second, without personal jurisdiction or an argument for long-arm jurisdiction, the judge simply did not have the power to issue the injunction. She advised Helen that if she wanted to, she could file for an injunction in Iowa.
That was it. The judge thanked us for coming and the line went dead.
My lawyer called me later and said he thought we could’ve won on the merits. He said he had read the articles on the website from beginning to end and there was nothing there that constituted any kind of threat that a reasonable person would be afraid of. He had some other suggestions about how to handle this investigation going forward, and I’ll be taking his advice under consideration.
Helen could bring her case here to Iowa, but our laws are different. It’s more difficult to prove cyberstalking because the law is more specific. Florida’s law is very vague. But more importantly, jurisdiction isn’t her problem so coming to Iowa doesn’t make it easier for her. Her problem is that she doesn’t have any evidence of any wrongdoing on my part. She perceives that I’m involved in her troubles a lot more than I am.
Furthermore, a protective order doesn’t affect the free speech being exercised on this site. It only keeps me from coming near her house, which I’ve never done and never threatened to do.
I’m happy to have this behind me. Now we can focus our attention on getting information into the hands of law enforcement that will eventually get her arrested. I heard from another victim just a couple days ago. I’m convinced there is no shortage of victims; we just need to find them and get them to file reports with the appropriate agencies.