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Dennis Toeppen Arrested For Harassing Online Critics And Being Creepy As Hell

from the keep-digging,-sir dept

In case you don't remember who Dennis Toeppen is, he's the owner of Suburban Express, a shuttle bus service in Illinois that chiefly works the university circuit for students and visitors. I actually took one of their buses over a decade ago (I think) when visiting my now-wife at the University of Illinois, which normally wouldn't be relevant to an article about a guy and company that sues their own customers, drops those suits, and then refiles against them. Except that it turns out that Toeppen not only enjoys going after his online critics, but also likes to dig up little personal details of those critics and then send them cryptic-as-hell messages.

And now, it would appear, he's been arrested for his creepy antics.

Toeppen added another chapter to his strange story when he was arrested in Champaign, Illinois on two counts of "Harassment through electronic communications," a class B misdemeanor in Illinois, according to a spokesperson for the Lake County State's Attorney's Office. By this morning, he had posted the $10,000 bond and was free awaiting arraignment, according to a spokesperson for the Champaign County Sheriff's Office where Toeppen was booked.
Between creating his own wave of public backlash and drawing the ire of Ken "Popehat" White, you might have thought that Toeppen would have learned his lesson by now. Not so, apparently, and his online antics are as strange as his harassment is creepy. It turns out Toeppen appears to go to sites like Yelp and respond to critics in rather harsh ways, and then continues editing those responses years in the future. One Yelp reviewer warned against using Suburban Express and mentioned that Toeppen had apparently Googled his/her name and responded with online article links about someone sharing that name and asking if that was the Yelpers identity. Creepy enough on its own, except then there was this follow up.
July 8. 2014
It gets even scarier...
I just got a message from him:
Hi Naama, Dennis T. sent you a message on Yelp:
Subject: RE: Your Review
"By the way, what is all that trash in your driveway on the google street view of your house? You seem a little wacko."
And now we're in the stalking and implied threat arena. The obvious but subtle suggestion by Toeppen was "I know where you live." Fortunately, someone has decided to fight back.
Apparently, this time at least one target of Toeppen’s tactics documented the situation well enough to get misdemeanor charges filed. According to Lake County Circuit Court’s database, the charges filed against Toeppen were based on incidents on September 23, 2013 and January 10, 2014.
I'd say keep it sleazy, Dennis, but we already know you will.

Filed Under: dennis toeppen, harassment, online critics, stalking
Companies: suburban express

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  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 14 Jul 2014 @ 8:10pm

    I am by no means defending scummy business practices, but what was the actual crime committed here?

    Does the guy replying on Yelp and talking about the trash in their driveway really rise to the level of a criminal offense?

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