A Florida sheriff’s internal affairs investigator who was trying to woo a woman he had never met by exchanging phone and text messages with her, ended up revealing confidential information to her as well as seek inside trading information from her, thinking she was a wealthy Wall Street heiress who travels the country by private plane.
Instead, “Jennifer” turned out to be an investigator herself, recording every one of their calls as well as make screenshots of every one of their conversations.
All of it.
Every piece of damning and embarrassing evidence, is now posted online, including on PINAC.
As a result, Kenneth “Mark” Lewis, a 30-year veteran with the Palm Beach sheriff’s office, has drawn the attention of the FBI, who have already been investigating the beleaguered department for months.
And Jennifer? The sexy, smart and sophisticated woman he had been chatting up for days?
She doesn’t exist. At least not in the way she presented herself to Lewis.
The woman in the photo she sent him is actually a Russian woman named Ekaterina. And the woman on the phone did not sound remotely Russian.
However, the EXIF data on the text messages posted online traces back to Moscow. A stone’s throw from the Kremlin.
Perhaps even inside the Kremlin.
More than 4,000 miles from Wall Street in Manhattan where the woman was claiming to be.
However, Lewis claims he knew it along, telling Jose Lambiet of Gossip Extra that he didn’t even believe Jessica was a woman, but a man using a voice changer.
But it’s obvious he was completely fooled by the sultry Jessica, thinking he was on his way to getting laid and maybe even getting rich.
After all, he ended up spending $119,850 on what he thought was an insider stock tip about an upcoming merger that she told him would double his money.
But there was no merger.
And there has been no profit.
And there is no shame as Lewis tried to explain himself.
Bradshaw, who’s up for reelection, does not comment on stories published in media organizations that he sees as hostile to PBSO. So we reached out to Lewis himself.
“We suspected she was a faker caller!”
“I know why you’re calling,” Lewis said, “and to be frank, I don’t care what’s on those tapes.
“I was onto that person and I figured she wasn’t who she claimed to be.”
Lewis says he now believes the caller was Dougan, who managed to turn the tables on PBSO thanks to a digital voice changer.
Not so romantic now, is it?
“We started suspecting this was a fake caller a couple days into it,” Lewis said. “I’ve been around the block a few times, so gimme some credit here. If a chick who claims to be rich calls you out of the blue and sends sexy pictures of herself, it’s likely to be too good to be true.”
Actually, Lewis’ demeanor on the tapes changed Friday, after he realized he didn’t even know his telephone pal’s last name after hours of chatting.
From Russia with Scorn
The mastermind behind this intriguing plot appears to be Mark Dougan, a longtime PINAC reader and former Palm Beach County deputy who resigned in 2009 after blowing the whistle on other deputies before launching a site called PBSOtalk.com, encouraging deputies to post anonymous criticism against Palm Beach County Sheriff Ric Bradshaw.
But Dougan told PINAC he had nothing to do with the recordings.
“I had advance knowledge of the conversation but did not realize they were being recorded,” Dougan said in a telephone interview with PINAC Monday night.
“I was trying to get information for my civil suit. They’ve been suing me for defamation for three years.”
He said the department has spent more than $1.5 million in taxpayer’s dollars to investigate him over the last four years.
He also said it was his friends who did the recording without his knowledge as a way to help him in his ongoing battle against the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office.
Dougan frequently travels to Russia and has many friends there. He said the recordings were not made in the United States, so there is no violation of wiretapping laws.
Besides, nothing they did was worse than what Lewis has done. Or at least what he bragged to have done in an attempt to sweep Jessica off her feet.
Hacking. Stalking. Spying. Spending years investigating Sheriff Bradshaw’s political foes, bragging about how he had sheriff candidate Jim Donahue arrested in 2011 after two years of investigating him, forcing the nationally renowned law enforcement consultant to drop out of the race.
Donahue’s charges, according to Lambiet, who is based out of Palm Beach County, were mysteriously dropped before his trial.
Lewis bragged of traveling to Michigan and Canada and searching public records for two years to find dirt on then-Sheriff candidate Jim Donahue, who got arrested in March 2011. A nationally renowned law enforcement consultant with no criminal record, the 67-year-old Donahue ran against Bradshaw after he discovered what he claims was PBSO’s mismanagement of $15 million earmarked for new technology. Six weeks after Donahue filed his candidacy, he was charged with five counts of altering public documents and arrested during a police symposium in Fort Lauderdale. Donahue abruptly left the campaign trail but days before his trial in 2012, prosecutors mysteriously dropped the charges:
“Ric Bradshaw is one of the ringleaders of one of the most corrupt public organizations in the country. I have seen what has gone on in Palm Beach County and recognize that in that county there is a level of corruption and dishonesty that puts the Chicago political machine to shame. In fact, it’s the kind of people in power in Palm Beach County that are the kind of people my dad fought in WWII to defeat. They are threatening the very fabric of our republic.”
In one of the conversations with Jennifer, Lewis says he has been investigating Dougan for four years, but has been unsuccessful at arresting him because of that pesky First Amendment.
“Believe it or not, so much of what he does, is freedom of speech,” he said before admitting that they went to the FCC, the FBI and the Secret Service to try to get Dougan to stop writing about them.
He also tells Jennifer that Anthony Rodriguez, the department’s social media guru, was able to hack into Dougan’s computer while he was in Russia, enabling them to view his photos before he even posted them online.
“I could even tell you what f-stop he used and what the lighting was,” Dougan bragged.
They also hacked into his Google Analytics, which he said enabled them to investigate who has been reading Dougan’s site.
“We hacked into his analytics, so know exactly where it’s coming from, how many people are on there, we got the whole scoop on it,” he said.
He also made a chilling statement about being amazed Dougan is still alive, considering he has pissed so many “powerful people” off.
“Some of the things he’s done would make you so mad, when I have meetings with some of these government agencies, trying to decide what they’re going to do with him, we are amazed that he is still alive. He has really made some powerful people extremely angry. Some very wealthy powerful people.”
And he said that along with hacker Rodriguez, they created “soft communities” of fake Facebook profiles, specifically of “young girls” who friended Dougan’s sister, which led to Dougan friending them.
And he said they go into people’s neighborhoods with “special software” to investigate people inside homes.
“We can tell exactly what you’re signal is, we can tell the type of server you’re using, we can tell you the size of it and we can tell you where it’s located in your house,” he said.
Outsmarted by the Enemy
Despite Lewis’ claims to having extraordinary skills in investigating people, he fell for the oldest trick in the book. The lure of a beautiful woman. At 56 years of age, you would think he would have learned by now.
But she did a genius job of flying underneath his radar and getting him to talk about his investigative techniques on Bradshaw’s political foes.
It started in July when Jessica called Lewis out of the blue because he had a contractor’s license. She told him she was moving down to Florida with her boyfriend and needed a contractor.
Then she told him she had broken up with the boyfriend and acted as if she needed a shoulder to cry on. And then she gave him the classic push-pull courtship to reel him in, telling him she was flying down to meet him, then changing her mind at the last minute.
And then she skillfully got him to talk about Dougan by telling him she had Googled him and learned something he had done to his wife when it was actually allegations against Dougan, which naturally got him to start talking about Dougan, whom he has obsessed about for four years.
As much as Lewis tried to impress Jennifer with his investigative techniques, it is obvious he can learn a thing or two from her.