Editor’s note: If you have not read this series from the beginning, please go back to ‘Part 1’ and start there. David’s story is too important to miss any part of it.
Additional Editor’s Note: David refers to his son Henry’s medical and mental issues, as well as his own. As part of his letter, David prepared a little synopsis of those conditions and the person or places where they were receiving, or had received, treatment. He also included excerpts from the medical reports regarding those illnesses and aliments. I include them now to help the reader understand a little better the problems faced by David and his family.
The following information was provided by David:
Medical Information for Henry Christopher Hayden:
Miami Children’s Hospital
3100 SW 62nd Ave.
Miami, FL 33155 (305) 666-6511
Diagnosed with Ataxia Telangiectasia (A-T) at the age of 3. A-T is a hereditary, progressive, neurodegenerative disorder. Continual loss of cells in the cerebellum of the brain and DNA. Damage accumulates and leads to the death of cells in the central nervous system. The three most common causes of death are: Cancer, infection, and progressive lung failure.
- Henry also is diagnosed with physical and mental disorders, and Attention Deficit Disorder
- Henry has no life skills and will require special care throughout his life
- Life expectancy 14-24 years. Henry is 16.
Medical Information for David Frederick Hayden:
Bascom Palmer Eye Institute
7101 Fairway Dr.
Palm Beach Gardens, FL 33418
2701 PGA Bl.
Palm Beach Gardens, FL 33410
- Tumor behind left eye wrapped partially around the optic nerve
- Unable at this time to proceed with a biopsy due to location of tumor
- MRI and examination was due on February of 2011 but was cancelled due to being sentenced to prison
- Has not been examined since arriving in prison
- Diagnosed at early age with Autism and Attention Deficit Disorder
The body of David’s letter continues:
In 2011, I received a visit from a local detective at our small heating and air-conditioning business which Leigh and I owned. I was informed that in the last 3 months they had monitored child pornography coming into the building using P2P software. I was surprised that he only said 3 months since I had been using the software for 6 YEARS and this had been a problem since the beginning. I expressed my surprise, and my lawyer later expressed HIS surprise that I would volunteer the information that I had been receiving these unwanted and unasked for files for 6 years.
You have to understand how my mind worked relating to all of this: I had heard about this software from a national news show, I never doubted that I was using a legal program, and accepted without question that from day one this is the way the system operated and that the authorities knew this material was on there. If I had been doing something wrong all those years, my mind would simply not process WHY this software was allowed to continue to operate, and why in the world hadn’t someone said something to me or come to see me six years before?
I know I am slow, but I just could not understand why they were there, but then he asked me why I was looking for child pornography. I was surprised that he asked me that, so I said I was NOT looking for it, and that he must know that ANY search can bring with it that type of material. I was certain that he must know that the titles and descriptions were continually misleading and incorrect and that the only way to determine what WAS in the file was to open it, even if it was only opened very briefly, which was the case with every file that was inappropriate.
Asked why I did not recognize that child pornography coming in through the P2P software was illegal, I could only answer that it had never crossed my mind that I was doing anything wrong because I didn’t ask for, search for, or desire any of the material in question. I realize now that this may sound naive, careless, or insensitive, but I never felt any connection to, or involvement with, any of that material since I had not requested it in the first place and all I did was delete it when I saw what it was. Seeing those files was like seeing undesirable things on television to me. When I got to something that was inappropriate or unpleasant, I just channeled through. I have never understood why much of the material that was allowed on TV was allowed to be there, and I viewed the filth that was coming in with the P2P files in the same manner: I assumed that the government agency (whatever that was) that monitored and determined what is allowed on TV and the Internet ALLOWED P2P to operate the way it did.
I had read several government reports that addressed child pornography on P2P sites and it seemed that they were well aware that this material was being attached to legitimate search requests. I also assumed that since the government allowed these sites to operate that it must be the way business was done. I simply thought that as long as I did not keep any of the material that I was not looking for in the first place, I was not doing anything wrong.
Some of the reports are as follows:
2003, United States House Of Representatives 108th Congress (Serial #108-8). This report discusses the ease of access to child pornography and of juvenile users accessing child pornography on the P2P file-sharing networks. Highlights from that report include:
- Using three ‘innocent’ search terms that would likely be used by juveniles (Power Rangers, Pokémon, and Britney Spears), it was found that of the files returned, SIXTY PERCENT of them were pornographic, including child pornography.
- Things that seem harmless in terms of their description are, in fact, way over the line, but this is not known UNTIL they are downloaded and opened.
- There are no warnings whatsoever. Consumers think that they are downloading something that is decent and they are often quite surprised at what actually appears on the screen before them.
2005, United States Federal Trade Commission reports the risks related to what consumers using P2P may face:
- Consumers, INCLUDING CHILDREN may experience inadvertent and unwanted exposure to inappropriate materials.
- Consumers may UNKNOWINGLY distribute files containing pornography, including child pornography, thereby exposing themselves to potential criminal liability.
- Consumers face numerous risks when downloading and using file sharing software (P2P). The government should play a role in decreasing these risks through consumer education, and encouraging industry self-regulation.
2006, U.S. Department Of Justice, Office Of Community Oriented Policing Services Specific Guides Series No. 41 (page 36, under the heading “Prioritize Their Efforts”); “Because of the volume of internet child pornography crime, police forces need to prioritize their efforts and concentrate on the most serious offenders, particularly those actually involved in abusing children and producing pornographic images. It has been noted that success in combating child pornography is too often judged in terms of the number of images recovered, rather than by the more significant criterion of whether the crimes the images portray have been prevented.
My actions did not mean that I condoned, or approved of, child pornography. My actions simply reflected my horribly misguided logic: 1) The government was aware of the problems with P2P as those problems related to illegal child pornography and other inappropriate material; 2) The government indicated there was nothing they could do to prevent this material from being innocently accessed; 3) The government allowed the P2P networks to continue to operate; 4) I trusted the government and felt that as long as I did not keep the unwanted material I was not breaking any law.
The detective took the one computer in question and left my place of business. After he left, I began to wonder HOW I could have been so naive all of those years? I was certain, though, that they would see that I was telling the truth, and that if I had been interested in, or searching FOR that filth, I would have had hundreds of files on my computer, which I did not. All that was there were files that had been deleted as soon as their content was revealed.
I would find out just how wrong I was months later when the State Of Florida notified us that they were not going to prosecute me………….but the Federal Government WAS.
David’s ‘letter’ will continue….