A San Francisco judge tossed out three hacking charges Friday against a jailed former San Francisco city computer engineer, but preserved a lone count that he deliberately locked authorities out of the city’s main network last year.
Terry Childs, 44, of Pittsburg has been held since July 2008, when he was accused of abusing his role as network administrator over the city’s FiberWAN network – a backbone that carries 60 percent of city data, including police records, city payroll data and jail booking information.
Childs was accused of holding the network hostage when he refused to provide the proper codes and passwords for several days after he was told he was being reassigned from his job in the Department of Telecommunications and Information Services.
He eventually gave the passwords to Mayor Gavin Newsom in a jailhouse visit eight days after his arrest.
Prosecutors said Childs had created three secret access points to the computer network, making it vulnerable to attack.
But Superior Court Judge Kevin McCarthy tossed out the three tampering allegations.
I wrote to Jaxon to see why the judge threw out three allegations. Jaxon replied:
… the judge could not find evidence to show that he did not create the access points, or modems, as part of his job.