Second Staffer To Senate Democrat Sentenced To Federal Prison For Plot Against Republicans
A second aide to Democrat Senator Maggie Hassan (D-NH) is headed to the pokey for her role in hacking Senate computers.
The aide, Samantha DeForest-Dave assisted Jackson Cosko in breaking into the senator’s office and hacked congressional computers to obtain the names and personal information of Republican politicians. Jackson plead guilty in June and claimed his actions were brought on by anger over the Kavanaugh confirmation hearings. Jackson was sentenced to four years in federal prison.
Deforest-Davis and Cosko had a “close relationship” however Cosko was fired by Senator Maggie Hassan in 2018. DeForest-Davis initially lied to police however, she provided Cosko with the keys to the Senator’s office. Cosko then used his computer access to obtain and publish the personal home address of US Senator Lindsey Graham, Senator Mike Lee, Senator Mitch McConnell, Speaker of the House Paul Ryan and former Senator Orrin Hatch.
According to reports from Courthouse News:
After Hassan fired him in May 2018, Cosko lent Deforest-Davis money for her rent but requested a favor in return. That summer, spurred by anger over Kavanaugh’s Senate confirmation hearings, Cosko repeatedly used Deforest-Davis’ keys to access the senator’s office after hours and hack the congressional computers.
He then released the home addresses and phone numbers of Senators Lindsey Graham, Orrin Hatch and Mike Lee on Wikipedia and Twitter, followed later by publicizing information on Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Congressman and at the time Speaker of the House Paul Ryan.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Tejpal Chawla called for a sentence of six months house arrest and five years probation, arguing that Deforest-Davis was central to Cosko’s scheme.
“Without Ms. Deforest-Davis there is no Jackson Cosko,” Chawla said.
Chawla recognized that Cosko manipulated the relationship and preyed upon Deforest-Davis’ financial needs, but he urged Hogan to order a sentence that would deter future congressional staff from carrying out similar offenses.
DeForest-Davis was sentenced to a suspended sentence of 180 days in prison, 200 hours of community service, and two years of supervised probation.
A Justice Department spokesperson, also stated that Deforest-Davis has been ordered to “stay away from Hassan’s office and staff, and may not use Tor or anonymized computer applications.”
Prosecutors wanted DeForest-Davis to serve six months of house arrest, five years probation, and 600 hours of community service.
Instead, the Reagan appointed U.S. District Judge Thomas Hogan was a little more lenient and sentenced her to 200 hours of community service and 2 years probation. In court, the judge said, “This sentence really is meant to help you.”
— Conservative Collections (@ConserveCollect) April 26, 2020