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Twitter User Arrested After Sending Seizure-Inducing Gif To Journalist

Twitter User Arrested After Sending Seizure-Inducing Gif To Journalist

Since the first incident, "More than 40 ppl sent strobes once they found out they could trigger seizures", Eichenwald tweeted.

A Salisbury man was arrested Friday on cyberstalking charges for allegedly tweeting a strobe animation at a reporter known to suffer from epilepsy.

Additional news outlets have also confirmed the arrest was made this morning through Federal Bureau of Investigation spokespersons. Eichenwald claimed the.gif gave him a serious seizure and vowed to track down his anonymous attacker. Then he appeared on Tucker Carlson's Fox News show, where he was raked over the coals for tweeting unproven speculation that Donald Trump had been committed to a mental institution in 1990.

Meanwhile, Newsweek identified the suspect as John Rivello, who was arrested early Friday at his residence in Salsbury, Maryland.


Those direct messages by Rivello included, "I hope this sends him into a seizure", according to the news release. Immediately upon opening the message, Eichenwald reportedly suffered a seizure. Lieberman says they have not ruled out any additional action against the individual responsible for for sending the tweet, including the possibility of filing a civil lawsuit. Rivello's iCloud account also contained screen shots from epilepsy.com with a list of commonly reported epilepsy seizure triggers and from dallasobserver.com discussing the victim's report to the Dallas Police Department and his attempt to identify the Twitter user.. Eichenwald said the images were created to trigger an epileptic seizure.

Since the arrest, Eichenwald has been bombarded with flashing GIFs - prompting him to tweet, begging them to stop. 'It triggers a physical effect'. Especially, in this case, where it was used to cause harm to a user. The same organization reports that these seizures can be brought on by everything from mandatory strobing fire alarms in public buildings and vehicle emergency lights to television shows and even sunlight flickering through Venetian blinds. In 2008, the hackers posted a number of strobing images to a support message board on the Epilepsy Foundation website, triggering headaches and seizures in "a handful" of epilepsy patients.

"What [this person] did with his Twitter message was no different from someone sending a bomb in the mail or sending an envelope filled with Anthrax spores", said Eichenwald's attorney, Steven Lieberman.


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