Police: Local woman facing harassment charges after using ‘spoofing’ apps to send anonymous texts

WASHINGTON COUNTY, Pa. — A Washington County woman is accused of sending thousands of harassing text messages to other parents over the last two years. Kristyn O’Donnell is facing harassment charges after police charged her with using “spoofing” apps to send the texts, which are sent anonymously to dozens of parents and coaches.

Chartiers Township police charged O’Donnell and the case is awaiting trial, but parents say the texts have not slowed. One parent, who wants to remain anonymous, showed us hundreds of texts just from the last month. Many of them are lewd, make fun of kids, players, coaches and more.

According to the criminal complaint, O’Donnell has been sending the texts via spoofing apps since July 2020. The texts allegedly include pornographic photos on which she had photoshopped her ex-husband’s face.

Parents reached out to Channel 11 with hundreds of the texts saying they are frustrated that the justice system has moved slowly, and the trial continually gets postponed.

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“We have waited two years and there has still been no repercussions! So, why would it not continue? It’s kind of like a child — you are going to continue to do something until you’re put in the corner and told not to do it anymore,” one parent said.

“I have received I would say, thousands of messages from close to 100 random phone numbers,” the parent said.

“Some of them [phone numbers in the group texts] I don’t even know who they are! Quit making fun of kids, leave us alone! How did I get involved in this — I don’t even know you people!”

Channel 11 reached out to the FBI. It tells us it helps local police departments with investigations where spoofing is being used. It can’t comment specifically on the techniques used, though.

Local parents have hired private investigators and attorneys and say they are desperate for the daily text messaging harassment to end.

“If you do speak up you are probably going to get attacked, your kid insulted, your parenting insulting. It’s a sticky situation — you speak up and hope something happens or you be quiet and at least you won’t experience any repercussions yourself.”

Another parent reached out via Facebook to WPXI, saying, “It is a shame that so many people know about all this but yet no one is trying to get it stopped. To have our police department tell us to just change our numbers is a problem. She walks around in out in public lie she’s done nothing wrong and it’s just absurd.”

O’Donnell’s lawyers told us they cannot comment on the case.

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