We Have The 'Criminal Charges' Patrick Zarrelli Claims He Filed Against Our Writer, And They're Not What He Thinks
from the that's-not-a-criminal-case dept
Earlier this week, we noted that “website reputation management” dude, Patrick Zarrelli had sent us a large packet of papers claiming that he had “filed criminal charges and bar complaints in seven states” against a group of people, including our own Tim Cushing, because Tim had written a blog post making fun of Zarrelli for a spectacular failure in trying to get certain articles about the lawyer Gary Ostrow removed from the internet. You can read all the details at previous posts, but Zarrelli claimed that he was filing “criminal charges and bar complaints” against Cushing and a small group of lawyers — Scott Greenfield, Mark Bennett, Brian Tannebaum and Sam Glover — who had all made fun of Zarrelli’s ridiculous claims.
As we noted in our original post, the cover letter made these (typo-riddled) claims, but the large packets of paper, showed no details, no explanation of any laws broken, no legal filings, no lawsuit, no “criminal charges” and no “bar complaints.” All that it included were stacks and stacks of paper printouts of screenshots of blog posts, blog comments, tweets, Facebook comments and a few profile pages. I hadn’t had them scanned originally, but after a bunch of people asked for them, I had a poor, overworked colleague of mine here at Techdirt scan them all in. And, then, the good folks over at PINAC were kind enough to reach out to the Ft. Lauderdale police and get a copy of the “Incident/Investigation Report” that it had on the matter.
In my original post earlier this week, I noted that “it sounds like he may have just whined to some law enforcement folks in Florida who probably filed it in the garbage file where it belongs” and indeed that appears to be the case. These are not “criminal charges.” These are Patrick Zarrelli wandered into the Fort Lauderdale Police Department and told someone in the lobby basically “but people on the internet are being mean to me!” and they wrote it all down (not even spelling Zarrelli’s name correctly) and almost certainly then did absolutely nothing with it. The filing also spells Tim Cushing’s name as Tim Lushing. Here’s the crux of it:
Contact was made with the reportee Patrick Zayrelli in the FLPD lobby. Mr. Zayrelli advised that he works for Dependable Website Management which is a cyber bullying and reputation management company. He says that his client Attorney Gary Ostrow hired him because a group of attorney`s were attacking his character and tarnishing him reputation on line due to an incident that occurred with him years ago.
Mr. Zayrelli stated that his company contacts the parties and ask them to take their posts down, which is what he said he did when he called all the listed attorneys but each one of them became defensive and started cursing at him. He was especially concerned because according to him, one of the attorneys Brian Tannebaum who practices in Miami told him that he would have BSO deputies arrest him.
Mr. Zayrelli said that the next day after he called the attorney`s all of his social media accounts (facebook,twitter) were all filled with negative posts about him by all of the attorneys and some had even posted pornographic material on his facebook
The report itself lists Zarrelli’s client, Gary Ostrow, along with all of the previously named folks, and one more: a lawyer named Dan Hull, whom we hadn’t previously seen connected to all of this, but there he is. Notably, the report says there are “0 Victims” and doesn’t list anyone’s name as a victim (probably because there was no crime). Hell, it lists Ostrow in the same part as with all of the people Zarrelli was complaining about.
There’s not much of a story here other than confirming what we originally suspected: there are no “criminal charges.” Whether or not there are “bar complaints” I imagine we’ll have to wait to find out. And, again, if Zarrelli is seriously contemplating filing a civil suit in Florida, as he had claimed, he really ought to familiarize himself with Florida’s anti-SLAPP statute, because I can assure you that every one of the people he is threatening are deeply familiar with it, and will certainly make use of it to get Zarrelli to pay any of their legal fees for filing a bogus lawsuit.
Anyway, the complaint and all of the contents of the envelope that was sent to us are embedded below. Zarrelli appears to have made a horrible “reputation management” person, and an even worse internet lawyer.