Virginia Man Held In Washington County Jail In Connection To Federal Cyberstalking Case

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FAYETTEVILLE (KFSM) -- A Virginia man was being held at the Washington County Detention Center Thursday (Jan. 12) in connection to a cyberstalking case.

According to court documents, James Hobgood, 36, pleaded guilty to a federal charge of cyberstalking after harassing a woman who moved to Northwest Arkansas after the two had a brief romantic relationship.

The harassment started after the victim called off the relationship and moved. Hobgood began to stalk the victim through email, Facebook messages and text messages demanding she apologize.

Northwest Arkansas Women's Shelter director John McGee said this type of cyberstalking is not unusual.

"The further that distance becomes the more likely they're going to use technology and the internet to continue the harassment," McGee said.

After failed attempts to get the victim to communicate with him, he took it a step further. Hobgood created publicly accessible social media accounts that stated the victim was an escort and exotic dancer. He also sent emails to the victim's employer as well as harassed the victim's family. Eventually the woman went to authorities.

Court documents state the victim was hospitalized at one point because of the stress.

As for Hobgood, he pleaded guilty in April of 2016 to stalking and was sentenced to federal prison for a year. He has yet to report to serve his sentence because of an appeal. Records show he was booked into jail Thursday and had a bond revocation hearing.

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