Across three seasons and the better part of the United States, Max Joseph and Nev Schulman have uncovered guiltless schemers, master manipulators and even those looking for their moments in the spotlight on “Catfish.” But the show can only tackle so many stories of deceit…
There are plenty of Internet evildoers who aren’t showcased on MTV, and their stories are often just as jaw-dropping — sometimes even heinous. Take a look at a few “Catfish”-type tales that got super-dark, and keep watching the show Wednesday nights at 10/9c:
An unfortunate family affair: Marissa Williams was dangerously irresponsible on the Internet, according to AL.com: She routinely invited strangers she met there to her home for drinks or sex. When her aunt, who was housing Williams, finally had enough, she decided to teach the girl a lesson. To shake her up, she created a fake suitor named “Tre ‘Topdog’ Ellis” — but the surprise was eventually on her.
As soon as Williams began communicating with Topdog, she allegedly revealed how much she hated her family and then devised a plan: Topdog would come kidnap her — and kill her aunt in the event the woman tried to stop the abduction. Eventually, Williams reportedly even offered “Topdog” a decisive plan of attack that would also leave her cousin, her aunt’s fiance and the family dog dead.
Williams is now in county jail on $30,000 bond and has officially been charged with the solicitation of murder.
The (distrustful) hands of the law: Police are meant to protect the public, but former Minneapolis officer Bradley Schnickel was sentenced to 30 months in prison for doing quite the opposite. According to the Minneapolis Star Tribune, Schnickel posed as a young man named Brady Schmidt on social networking sites in an effort to convince young women to have sex with him, even telling girls as young as 12 that they were “hot.”
Police said there were 18 victims in total — including a 14-year-old and a 16-year-old who Schnickel had successfully coerced into sleeping with him — and most had been understandably scarred by the experience.
“I’m scared to death that this man will come after me and my family again,” one wrote, while another said she was suicidal after the ordeal.
Birdman almost caged: Miami Heat star Chris “Birdman” Andersen was flying high two years ago — until the day he came home to find authorities, including the Internet Crimes Against Children Unit (ICAC), had searched through his possessions for clues that could connect him to an illegal act. According to Newsweek, police wouldn’t tell Birdman what they were seeking, but the news quickly led to him being called a child molester across social media.
After a massive investigation, Andersen’s innocence was proven. It was discovered that a 29-year-old Canadian woman named Shelly Lynn Chartier had been posing as him — among 10 other celebrities and public figures, including Brody Jenner — on Facebook. The woman — a recluse from a small town in Manitoba — allegedly communicated with their unsuspecting fans, and when the chance came for her to manipulate them, she had the time (and the gall) to do it. While impersonating Birdman, she’d threatened a 17-year-old girl (who’d claimed to be 21 online) with whom the pro had developed a brief relationship, and she had also blackmailed him for $5,000.