Ex places ad of El Paso woman on Craigslist for sex
Updated: Monday, November 11 2013, 09:39 PM MST
By: Genevieve Curtis
EL PASO, Texas-- An El Paso woman receives hundreds of sexually explicit messages and texts after she says an ex advertised her for sex online.
Dating in a digital age can turn dangerous when a relationship ends.
"Abusers can be very creative in the tools they use. When they're motivated by a desire to traumatize somebody and psychologically abuse them, social media can be a tool they can use very creatively, and they have," said Michael Alvarez, an attorney with the Family Violence Unit of the El Paso County Attorney's Office.
It's something 20-year-old Isabella knows all too well.
"It's just terrible," she said.
KFOX14 is protecting her identity. She's filed for a protective order because she believes "Mark," a guy she casually dated, created a Craigslist ad, posing as her, seeking sex.
Part of it reads, "I want a man to show me an amazing time.. I'll be answering texts all night and all week..... I need to see a pic first. Show me something good."
"I saw it and I was just like -- are you serious? Who does this?" said Isabella.
Within a few hours, a badgering buzz of more than 300 explicit messages bombarded her phone.
"I just kept getting messages and messages and they kept coming, and I was like ,'Oh, my God, just stop,'" said Isabella.
Most of the texts contained nude photos and explicit messages like, "want to be daddys bad girl?"
"It's really disgusting," she said.
It eventually forced her to change her phone number.
Hours before the ad, Isabella got a call.
"He called me and cussed me out and told me I was a whore," said Isabella.
That same night, she said, a rock went through her window.
"It's just a constant fear that he knows where I live," said Isabella.
While technology can take harassment to another level, it also leaves an evidence trail.
"So when something's posted on Facebook or when there is a tweet or a text, all of those things can be used and are used routinely in protective order cases," said Alvarez.
Alvarez said when it comes to domestic violence, it used to be that a victim had to be in the physical presence of an abuser, and then technology evolved, and phones became a mechanism of abuse. Now, social media is another tool in an abuser's arsenal.
Still, Alvarez said to be careful what you share and where you post.
"People tend to reveal their every move on Facebook, and so people who are abusive are watching that," said Alvarez. "They know what your plans on, and it allows them to stalk you and actually be present in those locations. So you need to be really careful about who you allow to have access to your accounts and who you allow to see the things that you're posting."
If love is a battlefield, for some, the Internet is their weapon of choice.
"I knew stuff like this happened. I just never thought I'd be a part of it, you know?" said Isabella.
Alvarez said there's no telling the lengths someone will go to online. The county's Attorney's Office has seen all types of cases.
"They've actually created profiles that they say are this person and then paint an unflattering picture of them; they are very creative in that regard," said Alvarez.
Isabella was not able to receive a protective order, because they couldn't prove who placed the Craigslist ad.
But she did file a report with the Police Department and is working with a detective.