Following up on Ken's excellent debunking of the myth that juvenile bombing threat suspect Ashton Lundeby was arrested and held incommunicado under the PATRIOT Act, we have a partial retraction from Mr. Lundeby's mother.
Lundeby acknowledged that the Patriot Act connection was her interpretation.
"None of the law enforcement officers used that term," she said. "But I knew by their actions that it was the Patriot Act. What else could it be?"
Lundeby also claims that her son has been denied due process. She said Thursday that after two months in lockup he has not yet been charged with a crime.
By Lundeby's own admission, though, Ashton had a hearing the morning after his arrest, before Judge James E. Gates in federal court in Raleigh. Juveniles are not charged but "adjudicated" in the parlance of the legal system.
In addition to her claims that Lundeby is the victim of the PATRIOT Act, rather than juvenile criminal procedure common to all courts, Ms. Lundeby now claims that her son, who allegedly was active on the infamous 4chan Anonymous board (or "/b/" as its also known), was the victim of hackers.
Lundeby, who home schools both of her children, said Ashton did spend a lot of time on the computer, in chat rooms and playing games. In the months before his arrest, he had started to exchange messages with computer users who dared him to make crank phone calls. "But they were to places like Wal-Mart," Lundeby said. "They were harmless."
In February, however, someone asked Ashton to make a bomb threat and he refused, Lundeby said. She thinks someone hacked her son's computer and used his IP address to make the bomb threat, traceable to his computer.
Perhaps, when his PATRIOT Act ordeal ends, Mr. Lundeby can star as the victim in the first Megan Meier Cyberbullying Prevention Act case.