An Internet Stalker Tormented More Than 50 Victims Before He Was Stopped
Jason Christopher Hughes's stalking spanned more than two decades and 50 victims before authorities were finally able to stop the Long Island man.
In December 2021, serial stalker Jason Christopher Hughes landed behind bars when a New York judge sentenced him to a year in jail plus three years of supervised release. His punishment pales in comparison to the amount of time investigators say the man invested in tormenting his victims.
Though he legally changed his name to Raymond Johnson, Jason Christopher Hughes began cyberstalking people—mostly women—as early as the mid 1990s. In 2001, a woman named Rachel was reeling from a recent break-up when she struck up a long-distance relationship with Hughes on LiveJournal, a blogging platform. Rachel, who didn’t want reporters to share her last name, was living in Austin, Texas. Hughes was in Seattle.
After several months, Rachel agreed to fly to Seattle to spend a romantic weekend with Huges. She was anticipating adventure, but soon into their rendezvous, she realized that they weren’t compatible. After she returned home, the harassment began.
She says Hughes tried to reach her via email, phone, and instant messenger. She sent him an email asking to be left alone. Hughes’s behavior reportedly escalated, and he began emailing nude photos of Rachel to her coworkers, boss, and father. She eventually lost her job due to the disruptions. Hughes continued to harass and threaten Rachel for several years.
The Pen-Pal and the Poem
One of Hughes’s victims was his fourth grade pen-pal. It was that fixation that helped place him behind bars.
His pen-pal eventually cut contact, but Hughes continued to harass her. He reportedly showed up at her college dormitory once they were adults and began threatening her in-laws after she married. The woman eventually moved overseas and became a teacher, but Hughes found her in 2015 and began a barrage of emails. He blamed her for his stalking behaviors, and went on to threaten her students at the school where she taught as well as her own children.
One of the ways in which Hughes allegedly harassed his victims was with a poem he wrote called “How To Make Your Own Pet Owl.” In the poem he detailed gruesome human torture created to turn somebody into a “pet owl” and included instructions on how to break bones, insert a feeding tube, and provide antibiotics to prevent infection.
According to Staten Island Live, Hughes was finally arrested on federal charges in 2017 after emailing more victims with threats that included murder and cannibalism. After several court delays, he finally pleaded guilty in October 2020 to one count of making a threat to injure. It was that plea that led to his December 2021 sentence.