A 36-year-old Ogden, Utah, man named Jason Valdez has taken social networking to unprecedented levels by updating his Facebook status to reflect that he had taken a woman named Veronica hostage in a motel after the cops tried to give him a warrant for a felony drug offense. He then held her for 16 hours, status updates all the way, including one with a photo of the two of them — he comments, “Got a cute ‘Hostage’ huh.” The standoff ended when a SWAT team stormed the room and Valdez shot himself in the chest. He’s now in critical condition.
Valdez’s Facebook page is still up, and public, though friends and family are commenting “we need to find away to make his profile private so that no one can see or post on it” due to the many nasty comments people are making. Reading the play-by-play of a hostage situation/police standoff on Facebook is as bizarre and disturbing as you might expect. Friends urge Valdez to give up, wish him luck, say they’ll pray for him — and occasionally he responds back.
According to CNET, the cops are not sure whether to charge some of Valdez’s friends with obstruction of justice, since they warned him of police activity on Facebook. This modern world, with a dark twist.