The YouTube serial killer hoax

Andrew and Dexter, serial killers.

The videos appeared on YouTube under the user name "catchmekiller." The speaker's face was blacked out and his voice was electronically altered. He claimed he had killed 16 people and gave clues that referenced a Georgia woman, Tara Grinstead, who was missing at the time. He also linked to a web page about a missing Florida woman, Jennifer Kesse, with the words "Maybe I can help."

“We thought we might have found out what happened to our daughter,” said Joyce Kesse.

The Georgia Bureau of Investigation spent hundreds of hours trying to find the man, and discovered 28-year old Andrew Scott Haley. He said he had nothing to do with murdering anyone. Instead, he said he'd posted the videos for an interactive mystery game.

He had not killed anyone, but he was arrested and charged with tampering with evidence for “knowingly creating false evidence to prevent the apprehension of and to obstruct the prosecution of another person." He also was charged with making false statements, since he said he'd killed 16 people.

His defense was that he was creating a fictional game and that others would know it was not real.

The prosecution said Mr. Haley knew people would take the videos seriously, and that he wanted people to believe he really was a serial killer. The prosecution said he terrorized the families who believed he was telling the truth.

The jury found him guilty. He was sentenced to 24 months in work release and fined $4,000.

Gainesville man found guilty in YouTube video hoax, Man gets 2 years in work-release jail for making false claims, Gainesville Times>>

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