IOWA – According to British technology news website “The Register” a 43 year-old man broke into a house in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, last month armed with a gun and a fearless intent to hijack a “valuable” Internet domain name. The incident took place in the middle of the afternoon (about 1PM) on June 21st, 2017.
Domain name theft has been something all too common in the digital world, but until now, has been, for the most part, a crime carried out over the Internet, in forums, on marketplace sites and within email transactions. This is the first time I have heard of an armed robbery in-person over a domain name.
Police involved in the investigation have not released exactly which domain name was targeted; stating only that it was “valuable” and they will release more details after their investigation is complete.
Iowa Man charged after being shot with own gun during alleged burglar – (image credit KWWL [screenshots]). Sherman Hopkins (pictured above) was charged with first-degree burglary, first-degree robbery and first-degree kidnapping.
According to reports, Sherman Hopkins, 43, was charged with first-degree burglary, first-degree robbery and first-degree kidnapping. He has no known connection to the victim.
It is alleged that Hopkins broke into the home where his 26-year-old victim immediately fled to his bedroom. Hopkins then forced the victim to his computer, which was in another room of the house, and at gun-point, threatened the victim to log into his domain registrar account and transfer the domain name to an undisclosed third party. The victim, hesitant to comply, grabbed the gun and was shot in the leg during the struggle, where he eventually overpowered Hopkins, got-hold of the gun, and began firing on the suspect as he attempted to flee, hitting him twice; when police arrived both men were suffering from gunshot wounds.
The incident is being investigated as a possible conspiracy since police believe the victim and suspect have no known connection; a third party is suspected to have potentially hired Hopkins or “had an influence“ over Hopkins, to pull off the scheme.
Since first degree kidnapping is among the charges, Hopkins faces life in prison, plus up to 25 years for the burglary and robbery charges.
About The Author: John Colascione is Chief Executive Officer of Searchen Networks Inc. and Internet Advertising Inc. He specializes in Website Monetization, authored a ‘how to’ book called ‘‘Mastering Your Website’, and is a key player in several Internet related businesses through his search engine strategy company Searchen Networks®