SEATTLE, April 10 (UPI) -- FBI agents have arrested a South Carolina man for allegedly cyberstalking a Seattle woman, turning her life into a virtual nightmare.
The Seattle Post-Intelligencer reported Saturday that James Murphy, 38, of Columbia, S.C., was charged with 26 felony counts of Internet harassment, each carrying a maximum penalty of two years in jail and $250,000 fine.
Murphy is accused of subjecting a Seattle woman to vicious virtual harassment with e-mails of amorphous threats, creepy mind games and public humiliation.
The Post-Intelligencer said the arrest is the first use of a U.S. law extending the prohibition against telephone harassment to cyberspace.
Joelle Ligon, whom Murphy is accused of harassing, said the arrest as "a huge relief" to her. Ligon moved to Seattle three years ago and began receiving anonymous e-mails that contained lies about her sexual history and character, with some of those e-mails sent to her co-workers.