Gwinnett County District Attorney Danny Porter has asked the Georgia Bureau of Investigation to look into a possible breach of the county courthouse’s computer system, purportedly after a Superior Court judge had her own chambers computer monitored to see if the DA had hacked it.
According to a Monday court filing, the analysis was ultimately performed by convicted child molester and DragonCon founder Ed Kramer.
Porter, who denied hacking the judges computer, confirmed Tuesday that he has asked GBI to investigate a possible breach of the county’s computer system and said he has recused from the ongoing investigation because he might be a witness.
A motion filed Monday by Kramer’s attorney, Decatur solo Stephen Reba, seeks to have Porter’s office recused from handling Kramer’s most recent arrest, a Feb. 26 incident in which he was accused of photographing a child visiting a doctor in Lawrenceville.
The motion tied the arrest to a series of events earlier last month, when it said Judge Kathryn Schrader contacted a private investigator in February “to discuss potential hacking of her computer by Porter.”
Investigator T.J. Ward had one of his technicians install a device called a WireShark on her computer, according to the motion. WireShark marketing materials say it “lets you see what’s happening on your network at a microscopic level” to monitor activity.
Read the Motion
The WireShark was linked to another laptop to allow it to be monitored remotely.
Ward put his computer forensic analyst in charge of monitoring and analyzing the collected data: Ed Kramer, according to the motion.
Kramer “discovered clear signs” of someone accessing Schrader’s computer outside regular business hours “without her permission or consent,” the motion said.
“In the midst of more detailed analysis and the preparation of documentation for Judge Schrader to utilize in contacting federal authorities, [Kramer] was arrested by Porter,” it said.
Kramer was charged with a misdemeanor, photographing a minor without his parents’ consent—a felony probation violation for him—and remains in the Gwinnett County Jail.
“At the exact time of the arrest, law enforcement officers searched [Kramer’s] home and seized all his electronic equipment,” including another WireShark and multiple computers containing the data he had collected from Schrader and other investigations, according to the motion.
Kramer voluntarily gave his cellphone password to investigating officers, who found no photos or videos of any children from the doctor’s office, the motion said.
Subsequently, Porter referred the matter to the GBI “for potential prosecution” of Schrader, Kramer, Ward and his technician, it said.
Porter told Reba he voluntarily recused from that investigation. Reba’s motion demands that he recuse from any further prosecution of Kramer.
Reba said Kramer’s most recent arrest was a “pretext for this dispute between Porter and Schrader.”
In an interview, Porter denied having anything to do with hacking Schrader’s computer and did not know whether or why she might have thought he had anything to do with it.
“I’m aware that she had been having some problems with her computers, but I have no idea why she would think I was hacking her,” he said.
“Basically I deny hacking her computer. I didn’t arrest Ed Kramer and I didn’t order him arrested,” Porter said.
“I did request the GBI to come in once we did a preliminary investigation and developed the possibility that there had been an intrusion in the county computers,” Porter said.
Porter noted that, since his arrest on the illegal photographing charge, Kramer also has been charged with making false statements regarding his treatment in the Gwinnett County Jail.
“I’m not recused from that case,” Porter said.
Schrader did not respond to a request for comment Tuesday afternoon.