Facebook post sends sex offender back to jail, raises bail by $200,000

Summary:Nathan James Gastineau was sent back to jail and saw his bail raised by $200,000 over a Facebook post he wrote based off a Battlestar Galactica episode.

31-year-old Nathan James Gastineau, a former deputy from Highland, California, was recently accused of having sex with a minor in a police vehicle. He was supervising the 16-year-old girl as part of the Highland station's Explorer program, which is meant to teach youth about police law-enforcement techniques.

To make matters worse for him, Gastineaus' bail was raised from $150,000 to $350,000 at a hearing in San Bernardino Superior Court over a Facebook post, according to The Press-Enterprise. On a Facebook Page titled Gastineau Support, Gastineau wrote the following:

This is your Admiral. I know there've been a lot of rumors going around … about the destruction that's been visited on my life. I would like to tell you that they're exaggerations, but in fact it cannot even come close to convey the horror that's been unleashed. The facts are … that my reputation has been destroyed, my job has been nuked, and my best friend is in jail. I imagine you're all asking yourselves the same question I am: What do we do now? Do we run? Do we hide? I think those are the easy choices. A philosopher once said "When faced with untenable alternatives you should consider your imperative." Tomorrow, look around you. Our imperative is right there, in our friendships, in our hearts, in our statements to the media, and in ourselves. War is our imperative. And if right now victory seems like an impossibility, then we have something else to reach for: revenge, payback. So we will fight. Because in the end it's the only alternative my enemy has left us. I say let's make them understand that as long as I still have a breath in me, that this war, that they started, will not be over. Thank you everyone for the support your about to show me tomorrow. I will see you on the other side.

"What on Earth is the matter with you?" Superior Court Judge John Martin asked Gastineau. "What do you mean by all this? You never know who reads something like this. You could be setting off a chain of events you have no control over that could endanger the alleged victim."

Gastineau told Martin the statement was not meant to threaten the girl, but was a monologue from the television show Battlestar Galactica (embedded above). Martin was not convinced, and even though Gastineau had been freed on the original bail bond, he was handcuffed by a bailiff and escorted from the courtroom.

After the court proceedings, Gastineau's lawyer, Andrew Haynal, downplayed any potential for danger, saying the message was paraphrased from the television show. "I strongly believe that my client would not be a threat to anyone in the community," Haynal said.

Gastineau was a co-founder and member of several costumed fan clubs of science fiction televisions shows and films. He was arrested on April 22, 2011. On June 21, 2011 he pleaded not guilty to three counts of lewd acts on a minor and three counts of unlawful sexual intercourse. Gastineau will return to court on August 25, 2011 when it will be determined whether lawyers are ready to proceed with a preliminary hearing on August 29, 2011.

Topics: Social Enterprise, Hardware, Mobility

About

Emil is a freelance journalist writing for CNET and ZDNet. Over the years, he has covered the tech industry for multiple publications, including Ars Technica, Neowin, and TechSpot.

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