back to article Internet jerk with million-plus fans starts 14-year stretch for bizarre dot-com armed robbery

An internet frat boy has been sent down for 14 years in America for trying to steal a domain name. Rossi Lorathio Adams II, 26, of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, built up a following of more than a million people by posting videos of drunk Iowa State University students on Snapchat, Instagram, and Twitter, via the website doit4state.com …

  1. Claverhouse Silver badge
    Meh

    Well, I dunno. It is America,

    1. Mark 85 Silver badge

      Indeed and American lawyers... If you ever meet one, count your fingers when done and go wash your hands.

      1. Cederic Silver badge

        In fairness, the lawyer should be doing the utmost to secure a not guilty verdict for the accused, and having failed in that task (due to the client being criminally stupid) should be working hard to assure all mitigating circumstances are factored into the judgement.

        The lawyer's just doing the job, as anybody accused of a crime deserves.

        1. bombastic bob Silver badge
          Devil

          I still can't help thinking about lawyer jokes at the moment...

          (like using lawyers instead of rats for experiments because there's some things people wouldn't even do to a rat)

          1. Chris King Silver badge

            That, and the lab staff don't get so emotionally attached to them...

            1. John H Woods Silver badge

              that, and ...

              ... there's only a finite number of rats

              1. Ken Shabby Bronze badge

                Re: that, and ...

                ... harder to extrapolate the test results to human beings.

                1. Robert Moore
                  Pint

                  Re: that, and ...

                  ... harder to extrapolate the test results to human beings.

                  Harder to extrapolate the results to humans, from lawyers or rats? I am unsure?

        2. ecofeco Silver badge

          I have yet to meet a lawyer who is actually any good at their job.

    2. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Devil

      well, it's DEFINITELY one for the "dumb crook file". But I think America makes it easier for criminals to TRY that kind of stuff [hence our jails are full].

      (in some places, the local crime boss would 'take care of it')

      1. Dagg

        (in some places, the local crime boss would 'take care of it')

        Do you mean the local politician?

  2. sbt Silver badge
    Devil

    Second of his name.

    His father might be wishing he is dead, if only to be spared the ignominy of sharing his name with this f*cknuckle.

    Shame the defence gets to waste everyone's time and money with the appeal. The juror strike grounds seem pretty thin; I can't see a juror of any ethnicity giving this PoS a walk.

    1. Mark 85 Silver badge

      Re: Second of his name.

      Even if one juror dissented with an 'Innocent" vote, he still would have been convicted. The only time all jurors have to agree is a murder case. There might be others but that's only crime I know for certain as I've done jury twice, once for an assault crime and once for a murder trial.

      1. sbt Silver badge

        The only time all jurors have to agree is a murder case

        Whether majority verdicts are acceptable differs between jurisdictions, in terms of the charges to which a majority verdict could apply (e.g. not for capital crimes) or the composition of the majority (e.g. 11:1, 10:2, etc.).

        It's easy to forget that trial-by-jury is not even the norm in global terms.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: The only time all jurors have to agree is a murder case

          No perfect solution? The comment voting here seems proof of that. Even if you are right 99% of the time, I'd not want to be the error.

      2. Joe Gurman

        Re: Second of his name.

        To my knowledge, unanimity is required for all felony convictions in all US states, not just capital murder ones. Majority jury decisions are sufficient for civil cases.

    2. Annihilator Silver badge

      Re: Second of his name.

      "Rossi Lorathio Adams II"

      So... "Rossi Lorathio Adams Junior", surely.

      1. DoctorNine

        Re: Second of his name.

        Only junior if his father is senior. If separated by a generation, or if he has another familial relationship, then generally a 'second' is the appropriate appellation.

    3. phuzz Silver badge

      Re: Second of his name.

      It does make me wonder how ego-centric someone has to be, to name their kid with their exact same name.

      Is giving them 50% of their DNA, and probably much of their upbringing, not enough?

      1. Imhotep

        Re: Second of his name.

        Dad is probably regretting the name about now. Or maybe not - Junior learned hus behavior somewhere.

  3. Sloppy Crapmonster

    Ah, the Trump defense!

    "When questioned by police after the robbery, Adams at first claimed he wasn’t at Target with them and knew nothing about the phones. He then changed his story and said he was there but didn’t know what was in the bag that Davis emerged from the store with. And then changed his story again and admitted he had in fact given Davis $100 to buy the two phones."

    First of all, I had nothing to do with it! Second of all, someone else did it, I'm completely innocent. Third, okay I did do it but I did nothing wrong!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Ah, the Trump defense!

      Fourth: throw someone under the bus.

      1. Rich 11 Silver badge

        Re: Ah, the Trump defense!

        Fifth: Get your personal lawyer to go on the TV news and furiously admit to the cover-up.

    2. The Man Who Fell To Earth
      FAIL

      Re: Ah, the Trump defense!

      Apparently this technology genius didn't think that Target might have a surveillance camera or two in the building.

      https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/social-media-influencer-gets-14-years-prison-plot-hijack-website-n1098721

    3. Mike Moyle Silver badge

      Re: Ah, the Trump defense!

      Ah, yes, the famous "I-didn't-do-nothin'-I-was-never-there-nobody-saw-me-you-can't-prove-a-thing!" defense immortalized by Bart Simpson, Esq.

    4. GrapeBunch Silver badge

      Re: Ah, the Trump defense!

      In some states, a convict is not allowed to vote. But I wonder if a convict could run for President?

      He has courage--the courage of his convictions.

  4. Danny 2 Silver badge

    Raphael M Scheetz

    I was wondering what happened to James Morgan McGill. It's all good, man.

  5. W.S.Gosset Silver badge
    Facepalm

    "Lorathio"?

    Clearly stupidity runs in the family. Or in whichever would-be Lothario named him, anyway.

  6. W.S.Gosset Silver badge

    "De-yo! De-e-e-eeeh yo!"

    "Daylight com'

    an' me wanna go home"

  7. HCV

    SME

    ...two convictions for disorderly conduct and public intoxication...

    ...Adams’ “entrepreneurial spirit” in gathering photos and videos of drunk students...

    Do what you love, and you'll never work a day in your life.

    1. Oh Matron!

      Re: SME

      I've an entrepreneurial spirited idea: A website with ridiculous defences... Like this one....

      1. Mike 16 Silver badge

        A website with ridiculous defences...

        Looking for more? How about:

        http://loweringthebar.net/

        (OK, not _only_ ridiculous defences, but stupid criminals, deranged lawyers, bizarre laws, well, really the name says it all)

        (No connection other than satisfied reader for several years)

    2. Ghostman
      Happy

      Re: SME

      Were these students mainly of the female persuasion, and possibly partialy undressed?

  8. Mr Dogshit

    Anyone called "Rossi Lorathio Adams II" deserves to be locked up.

    1. DavCrav Silver badge

      "Anyone called "Rossi Lorathio Adams II" deserves to be locked up."

      I understand your sentiment, but surely it's Rossi Lorathio Adams I who should be locked up? That person's parents were idiots, sure, but RLA I grew up with that name and thought "My greatest gift to my son will be, yes, this name!"

      1. Cris E

        I don't know, I sort of feel bad for RLA as well. Imagine a life where it's possible to truthfully say "My greatest gift to my son will be, yes, this name!" and not just slump into an extended depression. That's all you have to offer? Man, that's sad.

  9. NATTtrash
    Facepalm

    Dazed and confused...

    Want to have a really good laugh? See how this site "defines" privacy. I had to check 3 times, then found that the only difference between T&Cs and Privacy Policy is... wait for it... the <title> </snort>

    1. MJB7 Silver badge

      Re: Dazed and confused...

      Also, you will be sent a reminder about subscriptions [NUMBER] days before the subscription is charged, and the agreement is subject to the laws of the State of [STATE].

      To be pedantic, even the template is wrong - it is neither "the State of Massachusetts", nor "the State of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts". It is "the Commonwealth of Massachusetts". (Also Kentucky, Pennsylvania, and Virginia, plus the District of Columbia.)

  10. Aristotles slow and dimwitted horse Silver badge

    I feel sorry for the defence lawyer...

    Spending all that time learning the trade and then ending up so desperate for cash as to have no moral qualms in representing this total fuckwit.

    Still, America huh???

    1. Antonius_Prime

      Re: I feel sorry for the defence lawyer...

      He got 22k for it.

      Court appointed defence. says it in the article.

      I imagine his thought process went: "Hmm. This twatwafflen might be good for a few g's..."

    2. David Neil

      Re: I feel sorry for the defence lawyer...

      Everyone is entitled to a defence, even if he had moral qualms he'd still be obliged to defend the idiot.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: I feel sorry for the defence lawyer...

        If you did it, what kind of "defence"? Judgement should be laying out the facts. The problem is, people disagree on what is fact, and that makes things rather... strange for lawyers. If you know they did it, I suppose you can defend them on the type of punishment. But seems some don't help their future lawyers, by committing heinously stupid crimes.

        1. Jimmy2Cows Silver badge

          Re: I feel sorry for the defence lawyer...

          Defence lawyer serves a few purposes, regardless of the defendant's guilt/culpability:

          1) Present the defendant's version of events;

          2) Advise the defendant of their rights under law;

          3) Inform the court of any mitigating circumstances, such as self-defence, duress, mental illness/instability;

          4) Cross-examine any witnesses;

          5) Keep the prosecution in check regarding points of law, questionable evidence, inadmissable testimonies etc.

          6) Try to secure a sentence which is balanced within the law, rather than excessive punishment.

          Probably several other points I've missed but you get the idea.

          So even if the defendant did it and it's plainly obvious he/she did it, they're still entitled to a defence lawyer.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            @Jimmy2Cows - Re: I feel sorry for the defence lawyer...

            You missed two points here:

            7) Keeping a straight face when talking to the judge & jury

            8) Avoid rolling on the floor and laughing hysterically when he's pleading for the bastard.

          2. bombastic bob Silver badge
            Devil

            Re: I feel sorry for the defence lawyer...

            in seriousness, the adversarial court system for criminal trials is there to make SURE that the guilty person is the one getting punished, by giving as MUCH advantage to the accused as possible.

            That's the argument, anyway, and without proper defense, the prosecution might as well be a 'Star Chamber' trial. (Or somethign that the US House of Reps does when run by the current bunch...)

            1. Mike Moyle Silver badge

              Re: I feel sorry for the defence lawyer...

              ...as opposed to when it was run by Newt Gingrich...?

          3. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

            Re: I feel sorry for the defence lawyer...

            "Defence lawyer serves a few purposes, regardless of the defendant's guilt/culpability:"

            0) Advise defendant about pleading guilty.

            Admittedly plea bargaining taints this but if a guilty verdict is inevitable the best mitigation might be to plead and be as apologetic as possible. Back in the day in Belfast one of the QCs, if such advice wasn't taken would simply sit there ensuring the defendant got a fair hearing by making sure the prosecution didn't step out of line* but asking few if any questions. His car reg number, BTW, was FIB 1.

            * He once intervened to stop the prosecution, who'd called me, from cross-examining me trying to get me to say more than I was prepared to about a hair comparison.

            I never rated hair comparison as generally useful and couldn't understand why the FBI were so keen on it - they were internationally renowned for their enthusiasm. I was pleased to see years afterwards that they eventually fell flat on their collective face over it. The FBI were wrong and I was right. Yay!!!

    3. MJB7 Silver badge

      Re: I feel sorry for the defence lawyer...

      It is not for the lawyer to decide innocence or guilt, that is the job of the court. If the lawyer had to be convinced of innocence too, then an innocent person would have to convince a lawyer *and* the jury. It's hard enough to convince the jury.

      One can still feel sorry for the lawyer though. I am sure he advised pleading guilty - but he has to mount the defence his client instructs.

    4. katrinab Silver badge

      Re: I feel sorry for the defence lawyer...

      The cab rank rule applies. They have to accept any case that is within their field of competence. Everyone is entitled to a defence regardless of how guilty they are, because we don't know they are guilty until after the case is concluded.

      1. Imhotep

        Re: I feel sorry for the defence lawyer...

        The presumption of innocence means the jury should not decide guilt or innocence before a verdict is rendered, but the rest of us are pretty much all going to have an opinion.

    5. veti Silver badge

      Re: I feel sorry for the defence lawyer...

      It's America. The defendant is entitled to be presumed innocent until proven broke.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Fearing he would be killed, Deyo pushed the gun away from his head

    this is rather bizarre... both right and yet so wrong ;)

    1. Jimmy2Cows Silver badge

      Re: Fearing he would be killed, Deyo pushed the gun away from his head

      Guess at that point Deyo felt he had nothing to lose, so what the hell it's worth a shot. And it paid off. Yeah it could easily have gone the other way, but maybe he wanted to go out fighting instead of just waiting to be murdered.

      1. holmegm Bronze badge

        Re: Fearing he would be killed, Deyo pushed the gun away from his head

        Yeah, he was actually complying, but the guy was still pistol whipping him and holding the gun right to his head.

        Much like how it is with modern terrorists, it didn't appear that compliance was really all that safe of a course of action.

  12. Joe Gurman

    An attorney named Sheetz

    Seriously, you couldn't make this stuff up. Or maybe you could, if you were the late Douglas Adams.

  13. ecofeco Silver badge

    Future Silicon Valley Leader

    Mark my words, he has what it takes to rise to the top in Silicon Valley.

    Not. Even. Joking.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    May have been something more serious

    The plot as described doesn't really make any sense - I know "influencers" can be somewhat full of themselves and blind to reality.

    But surely even the dumbest of the breed would realise that a) they would be the prime suspect and b) the domain name could easily be transferred back.

    I suspect that the real plan was to force the victim to relinquish the domain name, then murder him, make it look like a routine home invasion robbery; hoping that the police would not discover that the last thing the victim did was to change a domain name.

    I'm sure the police (and probably the judge) also realise that that is the only way it adds up and but couldn't prove it.

    If the victim also realised that, then fighting back in those circumstances would be the best thing to do.

    1. veti Silver badge

      Re: May have been something more serious

      That plan - assumes a truly monumental level of incompetence from the police. It also makes both perps guilty of first-degree murder, which in Iowa would earn a life sentence with eligibility for parole starting at 25 years.

    2. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: May have been something more serious

      Prolonged contact with social media can loosen people's grip on reality as can mind-warping substances which could well have played a part in the decision making (for want of a better term).

      And you'd be surprised at how inept criminals can be in real life. A colleague of mine ended his description of one incident with "...and these were professional bank robbers. It's hard to get good help these days.".

      1. Carpet Deal 'em Bronze badge

        Re: May have been something more serious

        Everybody thinks criminals are usually competent thanks to Hollywood depictions that have them get away for the majority of the show. In reality, most crimes are committed by people with short time horizons and planning skills to match.

        1. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

          Re: May have been something more serious

          Yep. One fellow of my acquaintance, after being successfully on the lam with a number of outstanding warrants for several months, decided to drive off from a fueling station without paying. They got the license plate of his truck. He was pulled over by the police shortly afterward, identified, jailed, and soon found himself back in prison for an extended stay.

          He had the cash on hand to pay for the gas (ill-gotten gains, of course, but it would have avoided this little problem). He just decided not to.

          Smart criminals generally commit the sort of crimes that they're unlikely to be arrested for in the first place, such as online housing-rental scams.

    3. AdamWill

      Re: May have been something more serious

      You have built a lovely house of logic there, but you've built it on sand: you started from the premise that criminals only do things that make sense.

      This is, as absolutely anyone involved in the criminal justice system in any capacity can tell you, very very much not true...

  15. KBeee
    Joke

    I'm willing to bet that Mr. Rossi Lorathio Adams II wasn't getting his door kicked down by "No Win No Fee" lawyers

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