Violent Attempt to Physically Steal a Domain Name Ends With 20 Year Prison Sentence

An attempt to forcibly steal a domain name has led to an Iowa man being sentenced to 20 years in prison.

According to news reports, 43 year old Sherman Hopkins Jr. broke into a man’s home in Cedar Rapids, pistol whipped him and threatened his life in an attempt to steal doitforstate.com.

The report in The Gazette said “Hopkins, wearing a hat, dark sunglasses and pantyhose on his head, was armed with a 9 mm pistol when he broke into the home of Ethan Deyo … on June 21, 2017. Deyo ran upstairs to a bedroom, shut the door and leaned against it to prevent Hopkins from entering but Hopkins kicked in the door, court records show.”

“Hopkins then confined and threatened Deyo with the handgun, forcing him to log onto his computer and transfer … ‘doitforstate.com’ to a third party, according to court records. Hopkins ‘pistol whipped’ Deyo several times and then pull out a Taser and tased him in the arm, back and neck.

“At this point, Hopkins became more violent and was holding the gun to Deyo’s head, threatening to kill him if the transfer wasn’t correct. Deyo pushed the gun from his head but was shot in the leg during the struggle for the gun. Deyo then got the gun and shot Hopkins multiple times in the chest.”

“U.S. District Senior Judge Linde Reade said she couldn’t believe the ‘brutality and senselessness’ of what he did to the victim over ownership of the internet domain. She said Deyo’s statement, which wasn’t read in court, struck her because he ‘will suffer the rest of his life, not just because of the gunshot wound but the entire incident.’”