Kernell indicted in break-in to Palin's Yahoo email

Kernell indicted in break-in to Palin's Yahoo email

Summary: The Department of Justice has indicted David C. Kernell, the 20-year-old son of a Democratic Tennessee state representative, for "intentionally accessing without authorization" Gov.


The Department of Justice has indicted David C. Kernell, the 20-year-old son of a Democratic Tennessee state representative, for "intentionally accessing without authorization" Gov. Sarah Palin's Yahoo email account, the Justice Department announced today.

Kernell turned himself in for arrest and will be arraigned today.

According to the indictment (PDF):

5. On or about September 16, 2008, while residing in Tennessee, defendant Kemell gained unauthorized access to the e-mail account gov.palin@yahoo,com, by resetting the password using Yahoo's password-recovery tool. Specifically, he reset the password to "popcorn" by researching and correctly answering a series of personal security questions.

6. Once defendant Kernell established control over the e-mail account by changing the password, he read the contents and made screenshots of the e-mail directory, e-mail content, and other personal infomiation (sic). The personal information included, and was not limited to, other e-mail addresses of family members, pictures of family members, at least one cell phone number of a family member, the dates of birth of Governor Palin and another family member, and Governor Palin's address book for her Yahoo e-mail account. The screenshots of personal information obtained from the account were posted to a public website on the Internet known as Defendant Kernell posted the reset password, thus providing the means of access to the e-mail account to others.

AP reports trial is set for Dec. 16. If convicted, Kernell faces a maximum of five years in prison, a $250,000 fine and a three-year term of supervised release.

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  • I bet he is praing for an Obama win

    in November, as that way he has a great change at receiving a pardon from him.

    If McCain wins, well five years in Guantanamo is not really [i]all[/i] that bad... ;)
    • Pardon?

      A pardon? Massively, hysterically unlikely. But given
      his youth, the quality of his lawyer, his family,
      first offense, I see a fine, no jail time and three
      years of supervision.
      • It was a joke, given his family's

        political association :)
        • It was a joke, given his family's

          I doubt if this guy is feeling very clever now.

          Don't bet he won't do time. Neither party is happy about people getting into their email.

          At the very least he is going to do those three years and have a criminal record. The record limits what you can be hired to do.
  • RE: Kernell indicted in break-in to Palin's Yahoo email

    Hit him with the max, make an example of it. People need to be aware that internet crimes are just as serious as physical crimes. If you don't want to play by the rules, which are intended to keep us safe, then pay the price.
  • RE: Kernell indicted in break-in to Palin's Yahoo email

    I have no symphathy for him, but before the Government deals with him, how about arresting her and her husband for not responding to a subpoena to appear? Why is she using a private email account to conduct public business? What is she hiding in this email account she doesn't want on public record? I hate the don't arrest me cause I break the law, but arrest someone else. Haven't we had enough of the double standard group?
    • Tsk, tsk!

      No government business was being conducted in the account. You can read for yourself at the link in the article! Governor Palin was not subpoened and her husband has spousal privilege and cannot be compelled to testify. It would seem you don't have a single fact right. Go back to and continue to de-educate yourself!
      • "her husband has spousal privilege and cannot be compelled to testify."

        Well...he might try, but ignoring a subpoena is punishable in a court of law.

        Of course these two Gen-X twits feel that they are ABOVE the law anyway.

        Now it's time for Y-O-U to be educated Sparky.
        • Gen=X?

          Hate to inform you but the Palin's are before the Gen-X generation. Get a clue and do some research.
          • You are the clueless one moron....and probably a member.


            They were BOTH born in 1964, which if you can read, falls within the period described above.
          • Generation_X

            Name calling is usually the sign of an uneducated buffoon with nothing to say.
        • If he broke the law where ....

          ... is the indictment? Also, where did you get your law degree, K-mart?
      • Gov't Business

        Actually, she DID complete government business using private Email and has acknowledged that fact. The problem here is that the boy broke into the wrong account ('' vs. '').

        While the invasion of privacy is a serious issue, let's not forget the original problem.
        You are attacking the hacker while the larger crime goes unpunished. Palin used private Emails to conduct state business for the specific purpose of skirting the disclosure laws.
        It's like you are attacking the guy who tripped the robber fleeing the scene of a crime because the thief's knee was hurt when he fell.

        • They hang the man and flog the woman

          who steals the goose from off the common,

          but they leave the bigger villain loose
          that steals the commons from the goose.
        • Prove it!

          While your claim is widely published there isn't a single shred of evidence that it is true. It is all a smear campaign.
    • Research

      Please do your research I think you will find that the contents of the email account had nothing to do with Alaska's government business. Either that or quit being a political party mouth piece.
      • Partially true...

        For the Email that was published, that is true.
        Not for the use of Yahoo mail (she used at least 2 accounts), which again, has already been published and acknowledged as an end-run around disclosure laws while conducting state business.
        • Provide evidence of what you claim ....

          ... instead of the hearsay the left is peddling. Show me a quote from Governor Palin or her staff where they acknowledge this "fact".
      • Research Done

        Go to and look at the emails.

        Scroll down to the one between Palin and Lieutenant Governor Sean Parnell discussing Palin's tax plan (ACES).

        Emails between two government officials must be disclosed to comply with the record retention and freedom of information laws.

        Unless you think she is palling around with terrorists and has something to hide?
        • Not true!

          Government officials can and do have private conversations. The email in question does not conduct official business and is not required to be disclosed. The guy palling arround with terrorists is Senator Obama.