Report: Feds zeroing in on Palin e-mail hacker; Update: Suspect’s father denies he’s been contacted

posted at 5:37 pm on September 18, 2008 by Allahpundit

Exercise caution, as it’s a serious charge and there’s no proof of guilt yet.

But let’s just say that if it pans out, we’ll be playing the ultimate round of “Name That Party!”

The son of state Rep. Mike Kernell has been contacted by authorities in connection with a probe into the hacking of personal e-mail of vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin, Kernell told The Tennessean.

Kernell, a Memphis Democrat, said his 20-year-old son David had been contacted by authorities investigating the hacking of Palin’s personal e-mail account, the newspaper reported on its Web site this afternoon.

Jim Hoft notes that one of the boss’s commenters was pointing in this direction last night. Here’s what “rubico” had to say about his motive, per MM’s reproduction of his comment in yesterday’s post:

I read though the emails… ALL OF THEM… before I posted, and what I concluded was anticlimactic, there was nothing there, nothing incriminating, nothing that would derail her campaign as I had hoped, all I saw was personal stuff, some clerical stuff from when she was governor…. And pictures of her family

I then started a topic on /b/, peeps asked for pics or gtfo and I obliged, then it started to get big

Earlier it was just some prank to me, I really wanted to get something incriminating which I was sure there would be, just like all of you anon out there that you think there was some missed opportunity of glory, well there WAS NOTHING, I read everything, every little blackberry confirmation… all the pictures, and there was nothing, and it finally set in, THIS internet was serious business, yes I was behind a proxy, only one, if this shit ever got to the FBI I was fucked, I panicked, i still wanted the stuff out there but I didn’t know how to rapidshit all that stuff, so I posted the pass on /b/, and then promptly deleted everything, and unplugged my internet and just sat there in a comatose state

He can’t be an experienced hacker if he used only one proxy and, er, left identifying code in the screencap he took. Stand by for updates. Exit question: Slap on the wrist for a first-term offense thanks to daddy’s connections, assuming Kernell’s the guilty party?

Update: Via Stacy McCain, Kernell’s father says no one’s contacted him or his son about the case — although he’s vague when asked if his son’s involved in any way.


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Comments

Oslima has plenty to answer for and I doubt this email hacking incident is one of them.

csdeven on September 18, 2008 at 7:35 PM

Hawthorne: He may have thought that the press would protect his ID and that he’d be (quietly) applauded for his efforts.
He probably never really imagined he’d be discovered or prosecuted.

clnurnberg on September 18, 2008 at 7:37 PM

This wasn’t a “hack” in any real sense of the word. It was a Kevin Mitnick style scam, where he researched and guessed his way into her Yahoo account. It’s ridiculous to say Yahoo or Obama or the Dem. party was in on it. (Obama *can* take credit, as Ace notes, for his Saul Alinsky methods that encourage this crap.)

That said – as was noted upthread, we have twenty year old young men and women fighting a war. This guy wasn’t “a kid” and isn’t entitled to any special favors. If he gets a slap on the wrist for this – presuming he’s found guilty of course – I’m going to be mightily p!ssed off about it.

Laura on September 18, 2008 at 7:37 PM

I hope they nail this clown,or clowns!

I don’t want to hear,how Liberals are whinnig
about their rights or spying,or eavs dropping by
Bush,

when you have the Moonbats,who are really doing
this crap!!!!!!!!

canopfor on September 18, 2008 at 7:37 PM

My guess is he will get a slap on the wrist just like Sandy Burger did. Bushs justice dept. treats all liberal democrat criminals with care and kindness.
Just ask William Jefferson.

roninacreage on September 18, 2008 at 7:38 PM

He’s gonna love meeting Bubba.

GarandFan on September 18, 2008 at 7:33 PM

No way. If the kid gets any time at all, he is going to go to Club Fed in Minnesota. The one with the nine hole golf course. That place is nothing more than a resort with bars.

Hawthorne on September 18, 2008 at 7:38 PM

Exclusive: Here is a photo of the accused hacker.
No joke.
You saw it here first.

carbon_footprint on September 18, 2008 at 7:39 PM

I bet the kid acted alone. IMO He was too careless for there to have been direction from the Obama campaign, what with Astroturf Axelrod running things.

It is instructive what Obama inspires though.

aikidoka on September 18, 2008 at 7:39 PM

carbon_footprint on September 18, 2008 at 7:39 PM

damn the photo bucket!

upinak on September 18, 2008 at 7:39 PM

I think that Annie Oakley may be getting a bit big for her britches

KentAllard on September 18, 2008 at 7:28 PM

Were people heckling her? It sounded like it.

SouthernGent on September 18, 2008 at 7:39 PM

carbon_footprint on September 18, 2008 at 7:39 PM

damn the photo bucket!

upinak on September 18, 2008 at 7:39 PM

What, you can not access?

carbon_footprint on September 18, 2008 at 7:40 PM

clnurnberg on September 18, 2008 at 7:37 PM

Then he is the dumbest hacker on the planet. Much too stupid to have that good a rating as a chess player.

Hawthorne on September 18, 2008 at 7:40 PM

No way. If the kid gets any time at all, he is going to go to Club Fed in Minnesota. The one with the nine hole golf course. That place is nothing more than a resort with bars.

Hawthorne on September 18, 2008 at 7:38 PM

I know someone that works there.. ;)

Chakra Hammer on September 18, 2008 at 7:40 PM

What, you can not access?

carbon_footprint on September 18, 2008 at 7:40 PM

Not right now.. maybe later.

upinak on September 18, 2008 at 7:40 PM

Hawthorne on September 18, 2008 at 7:40 PM

Just because someone is good at stratagy, doesn’t mean they are good at other things. Statagy takes time and effort.. but this kid wasn’t thinking ahead to the next piece.

Not all little “chess geniuses” are street smart. And if it is true this guy went to mental health institutions, he will probably plead insanity of some sort. Mental derangement is another and Daddy won’t be charged.

upinak on September 18, 2008 at 7:43 PM

I posted here last night too… but I had to reset my password as don’t log in often.

http://hotair.com/archives/2008/09/17/the-obligatory-palins-e-mail-account-hacked-post/#comments

akgoldrush on September 18, 2008 at 7:44 PM

PRISON TIME SHOULD TEACH A GOOD LESSON
TO HIM AND OTHERS.

jimmer on September 18, 2008 at 7:45 PM

akgoldrush on September 18, 2008 at 7:44 PM

Nice to see another fellow Alaskan.

upinak on September 18, 2008 at 7:46 PM

As much as I want to, I can’t believe that this punk was operating under instruction from His Most High Obamaship’s thugs. It’s way too sloppy.

That said, I wonder if the kid likes banjo music?

brushman on September 18, 2008 at 7:47 PM

Video of Daddy

faraway on September 18, 2008 at 7:47 PM

It is instructive what Obama inspires though.

aikidoka on September 18, 2008 at 7:39 PM

Its not Obama, per se. Its the Far Left end of the political spectrum.

tgharris on September 18, 2008 at 7:50 PM

upinak on September 18, 2008 at 7:43 PM

He was institutionalized for acute depression. That is an emotional disorder, not a mental illness.

Whether he acted alone or not. He has managed to put Palin back in the news as a victim of the left. That is a good thing for McCain in the end. She can simply state that she never used her public accounts for any sensitive government matters and what the kid found will verify that. Meanwhile the left will look even more ridiculous and keep her in the news.

Hawthorne on September 18, 2008 at 7:51 PM

Depression IS a mental illness, but it’s not an excuse for wrongdoing.

clnurnberg on September 18, 2008 at 7:53 PM

upinak on September 18, 2008 at 7:46 PM

yep…unfortunately not up there anymore. someday.

akgoldrush on September 18, 2008 at 7:53 PM

Hawthorne on September 18, 2008 at 7:51 PM

True.

BUT… being that he is a depressive type (manic I would assume) that is concidered a mental disorder.

In the end it will rise up.

upinak on September 18, 2008 at 7:54 PM

It is instructive what Obama inspires though.

aikidoka on September 18, 2008 at 7:39 PM

Its not Obama, per se. Its the Far Left end of the political spectrum.

tgharris on September 18, 2008 at 7:50 PM

I don’t know, tgharris – Ace makes a good argument that it’s deliberate:

Obama is still a dedicated disciple of Saul Alinksy. He still admits he learned much from Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals, the Bible of community organizing.

One of Alinsky’s key precepts it to agitate, agitate, agitate, and stoke so much anger in the community to be “organized” that the agitator does not need to be a “leader” — that members of the community will step forward to be “leaders” themselves, and take whatever action is necessary. If the “community organizer” radical has actually assumed a position of leadership, he’s failed.

Success is defined as getting “the community” to do all the dirty work the agitator wishes to be done.

I’d say Obama is a pretty successful “community organizer,” eh?

He could tell his minions to stop. But he will not. This is and always has been his goal. An angry mob of leftist hyperpartisans ready to shut down dissent, engage in harassment, and commit crimes to advance the interests of “the community.”

But I think Ace stopped a bit too low on the food chain – Soros deserves plenty of credit, as he is financing so much of the Angry Left. Obama’s more of a sidekick/henchman than the villain.

Laura on September 18, 2008 at 7:54 PM

akgoldrush on September 18, 2008 at 7:44 PM

Were you the one that twigged Canadian Guy to the ID?

Hawthorne on September 18, 2008 at 7:55 PM

yep…unfortunately not up there anymore. someday.

akgoldrush on September 18, 2008 at 7:53 PM

Ahhh sorry to hear that. Not missing much on temps though and the crazy obamanuts running around Alaska.

I am hoping next summer will BE a summer. But let me know if you come on up.. I will let you know about what is going on and not what the daily snooze is saying.

upinak on September 18, 2008 at 7:55 PM

What’s the link to the YouTube video of Obama telling his supporters to get into peoples’ faces and argue?

Godzilla on September 18, 2008 at 7:56 PM

Nope: a year in the slammer. The Secret Service has had to put in a bunch of time on this and it disrupted the entire family, including the minor children.

michaelo on September 18, 2008 at 8:02 PM

Okay, you can all stop trying to locate that URL for me. I found it. Thanks for all your effort, twerps.

Godzilla on September 18, 2008 at 8:07 PM

Were you the one that twigged Canadian Guy to the ID?

Hawthorne on September 18, 2008 at 7:55 PM

dunno… pretty sure I posted it before him, but I didn’t contact him directly.

akgoldrush on September 18, 2008 at 8:08 PM

This may have been stated, but a poster here over 6 hours ago figured this out.

right2bright on September 18, 2008 at 8:09 PM

Were you the one that twigged Canadian Guy to the ID?

Hawthorne on September 18, 2008 at 7:55 PM

dunno… pretty sure I posted it before him, but I didn’t contact him directly.

akgoldrush on September 18, 2008 at 8:08 PM

Here is the thread where CanadianGuy and myself were following this David guy as the hacker. CanadianGuy had this posted at his blog 24 hours ago. All one had to do was Google his email address and dig a bit.

carbon_footprint on September 18, 2008 at 8:23 PM

But I think Ace stopped a bit too low on the food chain – Soros deserves plenty of credit, as he is financing so much of the Angry Left. Obama’s more of a sidekick/henchman than the villain.

Laura on September 18, 2008 at 7:54 PM

I see your point Laura, but I’ll disagree (at least to this extent)….Barack Obama is too arrogant to want to be anything but the big cheese.

tgharris on September 18, 2008 at 8:26 PM

Exclusive: Here is a photo of the accused hacker.
No joke.
You saw it here first.

carbon_footprint on September 18, 2008 at 7:39 PM

You owe me a new floor mat. Collie just peed all over it and it nearly electrocuted both of us.

My collie says:

When did Irish setters learn to hack e-mail?

CyberCipher on September 18, 2008 at 8:30 PM

CC: that really is David Kernell!

carbon_footprint on September 18, 2008 at 8:37 PM

Were you the one that twigged Canadian Guy to the ID?

Hawthorne on September 18, 2008 at 7:55 PM

dunno… pretty sure I posted it before him, but I didn’t contact him directly.

akgoldrush on September 18, 2008 at 8:08 PM
Here is the thread where CanadianGuy and myself were following this David guy as the hacker. CanadianGuy had this posted at his blog 24 hours ago. All one had to do was Google his email address and dig a bit.

carbon_footprint on September 18, 2008 at 8:23 PM

What happened is as soon as I read that great account by Rubico at Michelle’s site I ran Rubico10 through a Google search and got the link to the gaming site which linked to the blog and linked to the name. A friend of mine was outed at a non-political forum by a similar method. I’m still not sure where people are linking him to the “email” [email protected]. I only found the same screen name. I’m sure there were hundreds of others who did the same. Michelle’s comments were filled with people making similar connections. I first discovered who his father was from a comment on Michelle’s blog.

We still have to reserve judgement because what idiot would put his real email or user name in a forum frequented by hackers, but the whole Kernell-Popcorn thing seems like quite a coincidence.

CanadianGuy on September 18, 2008 at 8:39 PM

aikidoka – What do you mean, exactly, by “acted alone”?

If his own account of events is to be believed, a subset of /b/users has been trying to crack the email for days, so actively that the password resetting had been frozen for a time. He made it plain in his story that the “questions” raised by the press about Palin’s emails, and the publishing of the email in various news stories, had inspired the attempt to crack the account.

THe first group efforts were flailing, no
results”;”getting in the way of it getting off the ground”.He tried a different method once the password freeze unlocked, and had his success.

He intimates his belief that efforts of all were based on believing there would be bad things to find.

My point is that he was acting as part of a larger group effort to crack the mail because of recent news stories, and their own personal political animus towards Palin.

He always saw himself as part of a larger effort, and was utterly gobsmacked when he found /b/ itself was full of other anonymous people capable of moral decisions that might conflict with his own.

SarahW on September 18, 2008 at 8:41 PM

If what you mean really is that Obama didn’t direct anyone to do this on his behalf, fine. i’d like to see him discourage this muckracking a little more enthusiastically.

SarahW on September 18, 2008 at 8:45 PM

CanadianGuy on September 18, 2008 at 8:39 PM

You are the man! Posted on your blog 24 hours ago.

carbon_footprint on September 18, 2008 at 8:50 PM

Didn’t I read earlier on this thread that the kid had been arrested already?

anniekc on September 18, 2008 at 8:50 PM

If what you mean really is that Obama didn’t direct anyone to do this on his behalf, fine. i’d like to see him discourage this muckracking a little more enthusiastically.

SarahW on September 18, 2008 at 8:45 PM

No kidding. I think he could garner at least a little honor and sympathy himself by denouncing this. Unless he’s worried that someone will squeal in protest. He’s looking insensitive and his “clear the field” tactics are seeing the light of day.

hoosiermama on September 18, 2008 at 8:53 PM

You are the man! Posted on your blog 24 hours ago.

carbon_footprint on September 18, 2008 at 8:50 PM

All we have is his dad admits he’s the subject of Internet rumours. So nothing to get excited about. Plus, the feds are going to find out who the hacker is because Rubico admitted that he only used 1 proxy and the proxy provider in Georgia who has been contacted by the FBI said he could find out who it is no problem if the guy only used 1 proxy.

CanadianGuy on September 18, 2008 at 9:05 PM

CanadianGuy on September 18, 2008 at 9:05 PM

Great point; but if it is true, you are an honorary American.
My slogan for you: “It took a Canuck!”

carbon_footprint on September 18, 2008 at 9:11 PM

Here is the thread where CanadianGuy and myself were following this David guy as the hacker. CanadianGuy had this posted at his blog 24 hours ago. All one had to do was Google his email address and dig a bit.

carbon_footprint on September 18, 2008 at 8:23 PM

I was doing the same last night…

http://littlegreenfootballs.com/article/31289_Sarah_Palin_on_H_and_C/comments/#ctop

found his chess-in-life site, wiki account, rubico youtube account (he has a terrible voice and can barely handle those three chords, BTW), US Chess info, Memphis Scholastic information, etc. you’re investigation pretty much settles it for me…

akgoldrush on September 18, 2008 at 9:14 PM

akgoldrush on September 18, 2008 at 9:14 PM

Great work. Let’s just hope this is the guy.

carbon_footprint on September 18, 2008 at 9:27 PM

you’re=your

would be nice if his pops was sitting by his side at the time…

akgoldrush on September 18, 2008 at 9:44 PM

would be nice if his pops was sitting by his side at the time…

akgoldrush on September 18, 2008 at 9:44 PM

Oh man, we can dream!

carbon_footprint on September 18, 2008 at 9:54 PM

Does anyone have video of Daddy denouncing the Patriot Act wiretapping provision? Or saying that Palin should stay home with her kids. Hehe

BitterClinger on September 18, 2008 at 10:19 PM

Wth?

Doesn’t Anonymous have better things to do . . . like, screwing David Miscavige over?

Ryan Gandy on September 18, 2008 at 10:33 PM

I am watching local news here in Memphis, where David Kernell’s father, Rep. Mike Kernell (D) lives. This was the lead story at 10 pm cst. They played a telephone recording of the kid’s father who essentially said the same things quoted in stories elsewhere today. I didn’t hear them mention his father’s party affiliation (surprise!).

The reporter noted that David Kernell is erasing himself from the internet; deleting his youtube and facebook pages. Also included was an interview with Steve Mulroy, local socialist/University of Memphis law professor/county commissioner/former dept. of justice attorney, who said that if Kernell is guilty, he would likely only face misdemeanor charges. I didn’t hear Mulroy’s reasoning though due to background noise.

bluetick on September 18, 2008 at 11:14 PM

upinak on September 18, 2008 at 7:43 PM

He was institutionalized for acute depression. That is an emotional disorder, not a mental illness.

Hawthorne on September 18, 2008 at 7:51 PM

In my poking around last night, I found some connection from him to another site suggesting he might be into the EMO thing.

91Veteran on September 18, 2008 at 11:24 PM

The reporter noted that David Kernell is erasing himself from the internet; deleting his youtube and facebook pages.

bluetick on September 18, 2008 at 11:14 PM

One wonders why he would do that. Hmmmm.

91Veteran on September 18, 2008 at 11:31 PM

My guess is he will get a slap on the wrist just like Sandy Burger did. Bushs justice dept. treats all liberal democrat criminals with care and kindness.
Just ask William Jefferson.

roninacreage on September 18, 2008 at 7:38 PM

Why did Burglar get a pass? I know Jefferson is riding it out as long as he can at tax payer dollars, but I seriously can’t remember how stealing govt. documents got over looked…….oh yea, everything is corrupt I forgot….nm…

Ozprey on September 19, 2008 at 12:29 AM

OBAMA CAMPAIGN CONNECTED WITH HACKER

http://terryfrank.net/?p=3591

marklmail on September 19, 2008 at 8:12 AM

Yet again we meet the typical Obama supporter–amoral and unethical. This is the kind of person Obama will bring to DC if he becomes President. This is the kind of person he has already surrounded himself with. Obama will bring corruption to the White House. There’s no doubt in my mind.

jeanie on September 19, 2008 at 8:40 AM

I really wanted to get something incriminating which I was sure there would be

What is it about liberals that they just assume that everyone who opposes them must be evil. The only problem is finding the evidence.

MarkTheGreat on September 19, 2008 at 8:44 AM

Hang the little bastard. Fatwah!

Spanglemaker on September 19, 2008 at 9:06 AM

“That’s not the little dweeb hacker that I knew”

marklmail on September 19, 2008 at 10:21 AM

tie the slime and the crime to Obama

james23 on September 19, 2008 at 1:11 PM

who said that if Kernell is guilty, he would likely only face misdemeanor charges. I didn’t hear Mulroy’s reasoning though due to background noise.

bluetick on September 18, 2008 at 11:14 PM

I think interfering with national elections is a more serious charge then a misdemeanor.

I really wanted to get something incriminating which I was sure there would be, just like all of you anon out there that you think there was some missed opportunity of glory

He was looking for something to upset the election process.

right2bright on September 19, 2008 at 2:35 PM

bluetick on September 18, 2008 at 11:14 PM

Because the law is set up for releasing private stuff of ordinary Americans. Misdemeanor crime with the ability for the victim to sue (not going to happen in this case).

Of course this ignores the fact that the little bastard was attempting to tinker with a national election. But how do you really prosecute against something like that? CBS should have had its license to broadcast pulled over their attempt to take down GWB with fake memos. If that didn’t happen what do you do with a punk like this? Clearly his daddy isn’t feeling any heat from his constituency.

highhopes on September 19, 2008 at 4:14 PM