Internet Stalker Agrees to be 'Just Friends'
on 4/4/2005 (3)
After spending three months in a Mexican jail, California man Dan Reynolds agreed to stop stalking Susan James, whom he met a year ago through an online dating service and has been stalking ever since.
|Why can't we be friends? |
"You have a lot of time to reflect when you've been jailed in a foreign country and are beaten daily by a man wearing a sombrero," said Dan. "After this experience, I think it would be in both our best interests if Susan and myself were just friends."
This wasn't the first time Dan had gotten in trouble for stalking women. In 1998, Dan was arrested for stalking Canadian singing sensation Celine Dion, though he was later released after police determined he was stalking her because he wanted to kill her, not because he loved her as they had initially suspected.
Susan and Dan met on the online dating service GR8D8.com (Gr-eight D-eight) and initially hit it off. Susan was seeking a 'kind, gentle man with a love of the theater and other fine arts with whom she could share her deepest secrets'. Dan was seeking a women of slender build.
After numerous emails between the two, Susan finally took the next step and gave Dan her Instant Messenger name. The two were soon intermingled in an online chat that would reveal a darker side of Dan than Susan could have ever possibly imagined.
"He seemed perfectly normal at first," admitted Susan. "Then late one night he started talking about how he wanted to make love to me in a pool full of staplers and melted butter. It was really bizarre, I started blocking all his messages after that."
Dan registered multiple new account names and attempted to continue the relationship but continually found himself at the receiving end of a 'Blocked by User' message. After hundreds of emails with no replies and being unable to continue the relationship through Instant Messenger, Dan decided to do the stalking the old fashioned way, by hitting the streets.
"Since Susan had never seen my real face, I was able to follow her around all day," said Dan. Dan had cleverly used an old photograph of Brad Pitt on his online profile in the event of just such an occurrence, and because his actual photo never generated any female interest. "I'm an ugly man," he later admitted.
"Ms. James reported seeing a man she described as an ugly Dustin Diamond (Saved by the Bell's Screech Powers) following her around on numerous occasions," said Lawrence County police officer Sean Holmes. "She suspected it was Mr. Reynolds, but we were unable to prove this. Even if the intentions were good, if we started following this man around, we would be just as bad as he was."
After months being stalked with no help from the police, a frustrated Susan James left on a vacation to Mexico.
"He was always following me, watching me, stroking a stapler he carried with him like it was some sort of thing that you stroke that makes you look really creepy and scares away women," said Susan. "I needed to get away, and I didn't think there was any way he would follow me outside the country."
"I was determined not to let Susan get away from me," said Dan. "Not even poor quality drinking water would keep me from the love of my life."
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