Cell phone snooping could lead to charges

Still no autopsy report more than two weeks after second exhumation.
Jessica Cuffman
May 15, 2013

Investigators are trying to determine if someone planted monitoring software on the cell phone of a woman loosely connected to the Jacob Limberios case.

Keri Lakner, 41, of Bay View, called Erie County deputies Sunday when her cell phone went on the fritz.

“She was using the phone, she was looking at the phone, all of a sudden, the phone just started to go blank,” Erie County Sheriff Paul Sigsworth said. “All the information started to be deleted out of it.”

Lakner is the mother of Brittany Bowers, one of three witnesses who were inside a Sandusky County home in March 2012, the night Jacob Limberios, 19, died of a gunshot wound to the head.

She and the other two witnesses told deputies Jacob shot himself, and Sandusky County officials quickly ruled it an accidental suicide.  

Lakner is also the mother of Kayleigh Bowers, who is the mother of Jacob’s daughter.

The Limberios family spent months urging Sandusky County officials to further investigate Jacob’s death, and when their efforts failed, the family hired forensic pathologist Dr. Cyril Wecht to conduct an autopsy. Wecht determined Jacob’s death was the result of homicide, not suicide.     

Tensions have been high this past year between the Limberios family and Sandusky County officials. The county recently ordered the second exhumation of Jacob’s body, and the Lucas County coroner conducted an autopsy, the results of which are pending.          

Erie County authorities now suspect two men are responsible for planting some type of listening software on Lakner’s phone. According to a deputy’s report, Lakner’s phone may have been accessed and compromised sometime late last week at the Castalia home of Jacob’s parents, Mike and Shannon Limberios, although the report does not indicate who was involved. 

Deputies have already interviewed one of the suspects, who provided information about the suspected listening technology. About two to three days worth of conversations or phone calls would have been monitored in that timeframe.  

On Monday, Erie County deputies sent Lakner’s cell phone to a Toledo police lab, where analysts determined software was installed on the phone to secretly listen to phone conversations or to turn the phone into a listening device that could pick up nearby conversations.   

If monitoring technology was installed on Lakner’s phone without her knowledge, the suspects could face state charges related to wiretapping or unauthorized use of property, both of which are felonies, Sigsworth said.

Deputies are still analyzing the findings from the Toledo police analysis, although ultimately it will be up to the Erie County prosecutor to decide on charges.   

In other developments, the Limberios family’s attorney, Dan McGookey, and Sandusky County officials have reached an agreement on what has been a sticking point for weeks.  The Lucas County coroner’s office wanted access to a tissue sample Wecht had obtained from Jacob’s body during the autopsy, but McGookey did not want to turn over his only piece of evidence. 

McGookey has since agreed to send photos of the sample to the Lucas County coroner’s office.  

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Moderators have removed this comment because it contained Personal attacks (including: name calling, presumption of guilt or guilt by association, insensitivity, or picking fights).


Moderators have removed this comment because it contained Personal attacks (including: name calling, presumption of guilt or guilt by association, insensitivity, or picking fights).


Shouldnt you be cleaning someones bed pan?

Kottage Kat

I am curious as to why Anonymous is " bowing out".


Because it's not really "Anonymous". It's just some script kiddies posing as "Anonymous".


Because of the threats to a cops cell phone that was published on a facebook page. Sounds to me like someone close to this case is losing it and doing some improper tactics to get to the truth.


“Unfortunately we have found the waters of this case have been stirred too heavily by a third party for us to continue active involvement with any hope of making a positive difference,” the release said.

“Anonymous believes that these actions have been so poorly considered and executed that the mere suggestion of our involvement has irreversibly damaged our ability to bring about meaningful change in this case.”


The threat to the cops cell phone didn't even involve anonymous, they hadn't even started an op yet at that point. They backed out because this person was posing as anonymous and had been threatening multiple people; including the Sandusky register for deleting his posts threatening the women, some other reporter from the news messenger I believe, then this person hacked into this phone and threatened her; by doing so basically giving her a heads up he had hacked her... I'm not sure what he thought would happen once she found out she had her phone tampered with but obviously it didnt work the way he planned...
Understandably anonymous didnt want their reputation tarnished by this person who was using their name and acting out of character, after they repeatedly advised there were to be no threats made.


Thanks for the update. So the person that sent the text, also hacked the phone? Will this person be charged for that?


I don't know if the same person sent a text to detective O'connell if that is the text you are referring to (although its possible). On Keri's Facebook page she mentioned someone texting and commenting on the sandusky register site threatening her last week or weekend and telling her what a piece of crap she is, at least that is what I was told. I'm sure the text to O'connell is being investigated as well,


Ok, I misunderstood. I know that the Detective received a text that he felt was threatening, and no charges are being filed, that was a different article. The text o the detective and the hacking are not necessarily related. Is there any update on the phone hacking?


The person who did it has been called out on social media, although I don't believe the Register has published that information yet. I haven't been on in a few days so I will have to look into that and see.


Moderators have removed this comment because it contained Personal attacks (including: name calling, presumption of guilt or guilt by association, insensitivity, or picking fights).


Anonymous was a good thing for the cause. Some idiot came in here on the comment sections one or two times and screwed it all up.

Zealous is good, OverZealous is bad.


Agree. It's sad that the family lost a huge ally because of this person.


It is extremely sad.


http://www.change.org/petitions/... Please continue to pray and support this wonderful family. Sign & share this with everyone.

Kottage Kat

Thatis too bad, really thought they would be helpful.
The family needs people to help not hinder.



I think anonymous would have helped. Somebody, the article in the epaper says a third party messed it up.


It is wrong. Hopefully, the accused gets prosecuted to the fullest.

Any info collected in those calls will never be admissable in court as they were obtained illegally. There could be a full admission and out the window!! Way to go to the idiots involved!!

sandtown born a...

Was wondering when Mwrong would throw his SC corruption support out there

sandtown born a...

Dont forget to hold a cell for your corrupt SC buddies oh I forgot they did no wrong in your eyes


I don't understand your logic regarding my post. Obviously, my post, supports the case and in no way supports any official.

sandtown born a...

This post maybe not but all your previous posts about this matter makes us think you are a corrupt SC official yourself


Sandtown, don't want to drag this out butttttt I have said to first let the law do their investigation and then, if not sufficient, other actions may be appropriate. I have never said that I am against the family.


Information found on the phone wouldn't be admissible? Alexa Nasonti, got busted due to text messages. Kwame Kilpatrick was also busted because of text messages. Not sure where your logic comes in to play...care to explain?


It's not admissible if it was obtained illegally. The police had to get a warrant to review Nasonti's text messages.


Yes and the same for Kilpatrick. Plus, I think Kilpatrick was using a cell phone provided by the city of Detroit which probably gives them some flexability.


It is wrong mrite. and You are correct, inadmissible in court so I don't understand the motive??


If the report is not going to name the two suspects, then why in the world would they put in the report that the phone "may have been accessed and compromised sometime late last week at the Castalia home of Jacob’s parents, Mike and Shannon Limberios"

It sounds like someone is trying to make the Limberioss' the bad guy for no reason. It sounds like an assumption that it happened at their home. They may have been completely unaware that this was happening.