Michael V. Cibella, LLC - Litigation Attorney
Criminal Defense Attorney | Civil Litigation
Free Initial Consultation 212-818-1880 Available 24/7


  • Michael saved my life. There is no other way to put it . . . Thank you, Michael, for giving me a new day! Assault in the First Degree in Manhattan, August 2016
  • I have a clean record and I will always have Michael to thank for that. Aggravated DWI with an accident in Brooklyn, February 2016
  • Michael was invaluable in helping me through a difficult time. After being arrested with a DWI and losing my job shortly after, I was at my wit's end. DWI with an Accident and Leaving the Scene, January 2016
  • Because of you, I'm driving my kids to school! Thank you!! DWI & DMV Refusal Hearing, August 2015
  • Mike Cibella did an excellent job! . . . When something wasn’t right the day the charge was to be dismissed, Mike hunted down the DA to make it right and end the case with a dismissal. We are grateful to have engaged him. Criminal Mischief, July 2015
  • Michael, I am grateful for your help with the DA and can't thank you enough for what you did for our son. You gave him a second chance . . . Grand Larceny, May 2015
  • Michael could not have done more for me in immediately being available and putting me at ease . . . had a bull-dog-like tenacity that never stopped fighting for my case and had a great court presentation. DWI, March 2015
  • I know a dodged a bullet and it's all thanks to Michael's judgment, experience and hard work! Insurance Fraud, September 2014
  • ... Again, I'm forever grateful. I wish there were better words. THANK YOU! Fraud Investigation, July 2014
  • Thank you for all your hard work and for making this crazy process a little easier to handle. I'm very fortunate to have had you on my side. DWI, February 2014
  • Thank you very much for all that you've done. You made this difficult process very easy for me and I'm doing much better thanks to your help. DWI, December 2013
  • Thank you for saving my career! Investment Bank Trader, Larceny case, July 2011.
Michael V. Cibella Michael V. Cibella
Practice Areas

New crime? Man arrested for sending seizure-inducing Tweet

New crime? Man arrested for sending seizure-inducing Tweet

A man from another state was recently arrested for sending a GIF with a strobe-like animation to a journalist on Twitter. The harm? The journalist, Newsweek’s Kurt Eichenwald, has epilepsy, and strobe lights can trigger seizures in many epileptics. Unfortunately, Eichenwald did suffer from a seizure on the occasion, which took place after Eichenwald appeared on Fox News’s “Tucker Carlson Tonight” in December.

In the Tweet containing the GIF, which was sent, the man allegedly wrote “You deserve a seizure,” and later Tweeted, “Spammed this at (Eichenwald) let’s see if he dies,” and “I know he has epilepsy.”

Copycats then began Tweeting the strobing GIF. Eichenwald says he received some 40 copies before he himself sent a Tweet educating readers about the potential effect.

The man was arrested by a coalition of agencies including the FBI, the Department of Homeland Security the Maryland State Police, the Ocean City Police Department and the Dallas Police Department. He has been charged with cyberstalking.

The alleged perpetrator, who goes by the now-banned Twitter handle @jew_golstein, may have been motivated by anti-Semitism, or perhaps by anger over Eichenwald’s anti-Trump rhetoric, according to the New York Daily News.

“This electronic message was no different than a bomb sent in the mail or anthrax sent in an envelope,” Eichenwald’s attorney told the New York Times. “It triggers a physical effect.”

The Department of Justice did not charge the incident under the same statute as it would have had anthrax been sent in an envelope, however. Neither did they attempt to categorize the incident as a hate crime.

Instead, prosecutors chose the seemingly small-time charge of cyberstalking. Under federal law, however, cyberstalking is charged as ordinary stalking and the word does not carry its everyday meaning.

Instead of a statute against a former or hopeful romantic partner intrusively keeping tabs on a love interest, the federal stalking law essentially prohibits traveling across state lines with the intent to intent to kill, injure, harass, or intimidate another person by performing an act reasonably likely to make them fear for their life or safety. If convicted, the man could face up to 10 years in prison if Eichenwald’s seizure is held to be serious bodily injury and if the strobing GIF is held to be a dangerous weapon.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Criminal Defense Attorney