Report: LINKIN PARK Singer Stalked By Albuquerque Woman

November 23, 2006

Sue Vorenberg of The Albuquerque Tribune reports:

Sandia National Laboratories has fired an employee accused of using a computer owned by the labs to hack into phone and computer accounts owned by Chester Bennington, the lead singer of the band LINKIN PARK, a labs spokesman said.

Devon Lynn Townsend, who worked in Sandia's Technology and Manufacturing Group, has been charged with fraud and related activity, according to filings in U.S. District Court in Albuquerque.

The labs have conducted an internal investigation over the past several days and terminated her employment today (Wednesday, Nov. 22),said Michael Padilla, a labs spokesman.

In October, an agent from the Department of Defense Office of the Inspector General uncovered evidence that Townsend had hacked into cell phone and computer accounts owned by Bennington and his wife, Talinda Bennington, according to a criminal complaint filed Monday.

The U.S. Secret Service had received a complaint from the Benningtons that "an unknown person, without authorization, had somehow accessed their Verizon Wireless telephone account," according to the complaint.

The Secret Service traced the unauthorized access back to a computer address owned by Sandia, the complaint said.

The labs inspected the computer and traced the activity to an account owned by Townsend. The computer had been used to access the couple's Verizon Wireless accounts and change passwords, according to the complaint.

Sandia investigators also found a desktop folder on the computer that contained a 34-page Verizon Wireless bill that belonged to the Benningtons, the complaint said.

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