True Story Time: What happened when "Talhotblond" and "MarineSniper" struck up an online love affair

Pimpin Ken

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The Internet is known as a breeding ground for illicit affairs between people often hiding behind fake names and handles. But most such virtual relationships aren't dangerous as this -- when "Talhotblond" and "MarineSniper" struck up a relationship online, it ended in murder...

This is a true story and it's now True Story Time with your host Pimpin Ken.
 

Pimpin Ken

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By all accounts, Mary Shieler seemed to be a perfect mother, one who spoiled her breathtakingly beautiful teenage daughter, Jessi. Which makes it all the more difficult to understand the evil this mother was secretly unleashing into cyberspace.

Turns out Mary, middle aged, overweight, and tragically bored, had created a new life for herself online. One where SHE was Jessi. One where SHE used her daughter’s pictures and videos to lure men into a sex charged Internet web of lies.

Jessi’s swimsuit photos, and Mary’s screen name: "Talhotblond" were the perfect bait. Mary was thrilled with all the attention. She took more pictures while Jessi wasn’t looking — of her daughter lifeguarding at the pool, getting into the car, showing an unintended flash of skin.
 

Pimpin Ken

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Thomas Montgomery was a married 46-year old father of two, who entered a chat room on the popular game site "Pogo" with the screen name: "MarineSniper."

When 18-year old "Talhotblond" started instant-messaging him, he decided to pretend he was 18 too.

"I kept thinking, well, we're never going to meet. ... I'll just play the game with her," he said.
 

Pimpin Ken

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"Talhotblond's" instant messages revealed that her real name was Jessi, a softball-playing high school senior from West Virginia. She sent Montgomery "MarineSniper" photos that lived up to her screen name ... and then some.

"There were some ... very provocative poses," Montgomery said.

In return, "Talhotblond" wanted to see what "MarineSniper" looked like; so he sent her his photo from Marine boot camp.

The picture was 30 years out of date. Montgomery's screen name, "MarineSniper," was a nostalgic harkening back to the six years he spent in the military as a young man.

He hinted darkly of covert ops and dark deeds best unmentioned, but U.S. Marine records obtained show that although he qualified as a sharpshooter, he never trained as a sniper or saw action.

But for Jessi "Talhotblond," he invented a younger, stronger, more virile version of himself, called "Tommy." "He was my height, 6 feet tall, had bright red hair," said Montgomery, "big shoulders, muscles and all that."
 

Pimpin Ken

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Instant messages recovered from Thomas Montgomery's computer show that the online relationship began to consume him. Afterwards, he explained that the relationship "became more real to me than real life."

The feeling seemed to be mutual. "Jessi" and "Tommy" exchanged gifts, phone calls and love letters.

"I love you always and forever, Tommy," wrote Jessi.

"I have never felt this way," Montgomery responded.

The relationship had become more than a flirtation, Montgomery said.

"There was virtual sex going on in there between her and Tommy," he said.

While Montgomery said the virtual sex made him "feel kind of dirty," he was in too deep to sever ties with her.

"If I was smart, I would've just ended it, but it was like a drug that I needed every day," he said.

When his wife told him to get off the computer and talk to her, Montgomery couldn't. "I just told her I'll get off when I'm done," he recalled.

Montgomery seemed to be losing touch with reality. He wrote a note to himself:

"On January 2, 2006
Tom Montgomery (46 years old) ceases to exist and is replaced by a 18-year old battle-scarred marine ... He is moving to West Virginia to be with the love of his life."
 

Pimpin Ken

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For almost a year, "MarineSniper" and "Talhotblond" carried on a steamy love affair, until fate finally took a hand.

One of Thomas Montgomery's daughters was using his computer when Jessi "Talhotblond" instant messaged him. Montgomery's wife, Cindy Montgomery, alerted by her daughter, found a trove of love letters, photos and mementos from Jessi.

Cindy Montgomery was hurt and furious, but this mom felt sorry for the 18-year old Jessi, and wrote her a letter and sent a photo of her family, exposing her husband's "MarineSniper's" true identity:

"Let me introduce you to these people," she wrote. "The man in the center is Tom, my husband since 1989. ... He is 46 years old."

"Do not trust words on a computer, let this go, you will only be hurt by a man who has mastered the art of manipulations and lies.
Sincerely, Cindy Montgomery"
 

Pimpin Ken

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Thomas Montgomery said Jessi was horrified, and broke off the relationship immediately. "She sends me a message and says, she hates me ... you should be put in jail for this."

This would have been a great time for the fantasy to end, but Jessi "Talhotblond" couldn’t let it go. She would extract revenge by starting up another steamy online affair, with one of Thomas Montgomery’s co- workers, Brian Barrett.

Before long, Jessi was sending Brian her photos and the two had become a cyber-item. Brian Barrett was a handsome 22-year old, the only one in this sordid tale who was telling the truth. Brian was quickly entangled in "Talhotblond’s" web. The cyber-sex was just too hot to resist.

When Thomas Montgomery found out Jessi "Talhotblond" had a new lover, a slow burn began. It escalated to full fledged uncontrollable rage when he overheard Brian Barrett tell their mutual co-workers that Jessi had chosen him, Brian, to "pop her cherry."

Thomas Montgomery's messages to Jessi "Talhotblond" became increasingly violent, as he was forced to watch her romance with his co-worker, blossom in the same chat rooms he used to frequent with her.

"Brian will pay in blood," Montgomery instant messaged to "Talhotblond" at one point.

"He was enraged," said former prosecutor Ken Case. "I mean, it oftentimes shocked me when I saw the names that he would call her."

Jessi "Talhotblond" and her new cyber-lover, Brian Barrett, took to the Internet to make sure everyone knew Montgomery "MarineSniper" was a fraud.

They went into chat rooms, letting people know that he was actually 46 years old, almost making him out to be a Creeper, for pursuing 18-year old "Talhotblond."
 

Pimpin Ken

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But the IMs that came to Montgomery "MarineSniper" from "Talhotblond" showed her to be torn --- mad one instant, desperate to return to a love with a man who she knew didn't exist ... teasing him.

Talhotblond: i ache to be with tommy

Talhotblond: do you miss it tom

Marinesniper: more then u will ever know

Marinesniper: my heart aches to hear you call me your tommie

Marinesniper: i wish i could be that 19 yr old marine for u

Talhotblond: i know tom


Jessi "Talhotblond" took up with Montgomery "MarineSniper" again.

In his mind, this was the jackpot. He was being accepted for being 46, and he still had this hot young girl who wanted him.

Montgomery knew he was in way over his head, but he couldn't bring himself to end things with her.

"It was like a drug. I was addicted to it," he said. "I couldn't just, just end it."
 

Pimpin Ken

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Montgomery says nothing sexual happened between them after Jessi "Talhotblond" found out how old he was, but their IMs tell a different story:

Marinesniper: wish you were nude

Talhotblond: what would ya do?

Marinesniper: stare

Talhotblond: that all

Marinesniper: nope

Marinesniper: u might get the magic

Talhotblond: mmmmm

Talhotblond: make love to me tommy


But it didn't last. Jessi "Talhotblond" told Montgomery they were through, and seemed to take up with Montgomery's co-worker, Brian Barrett, again. Montgomery began to go into a downward spiral.

"The obsession turns into jealousy, and then the jealousy turns into betrayal and revenge," said District Attorney Frank Sedita. "You really start to get a sense of this person going into an abyss. And it's kind of frightening."
 

Pimpin Ken

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And then ... the tipping point. Brian Barrett told Thomas Montgomery he was going to meet Jessi "Talhotblond" -- in person.

Thomas Montgomery’s alter ego suddenly and violently crossed over from fantasy to real life.

On Sept. 15, 2006, as Brian Barrett left work, three shots rang out. Brian Barrett was found dead in the parking lot where he worked, shot three times by a military rifle.

Police quickly learned of the Internet love triangle from co-workers. And when they couldn't find Thomas Montgomery, they feared they knew just where he was headed.

Police capt. Ron Kenyon said, "Our first concern was talking to Jessi and making sure she was still alive." But when police arrived at Jessi's home, they were in for a surprise: A woman named Mary Shieler opened the door.
 

Pimpin Ken

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As police questioned Mary Shieler, she revealed a shocking truth: She was the one who had been sending messages to Thomas Montgomery and Brian Barrett, under the handle: "Talhotblond." The pictures she sent were actually those of her daughter, the real Jessi, who had no knowledge of her mother's cyberlife.

Thomas Montgomery was charged and later plead guilty to the murder of Brian Barrett. In exchange for his plea, he received a 20-year sentence.

Prosecutors looked for a way to charge Mary Shieler for something -- anything -- in the case, but concluded she never crossed a legal line.

Mary Shieler didn't come away unscathed. Her husband divorced her over her deception and her daughter, the real Jessi, also cut ties, moving in with relatives in Virginia, where she was attending college.

"It was stupid. It should have never happened. I just never thought it would go anywhere," Mary Shieler said. "That it would end, fall off and that would be the end of it."
 

Pimpin Ken

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Mary Shieler and Jessi Shieler

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monique

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Excellent read!!!!!
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Ima gonna watch this!
 

monique

If I were kind and adoring How would that be?
The Management
Most Benevolent Dictator
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Okay I just watched it whilst cooking...
Great story. I wish @Pimpin Ken did t tell me the key issue of the 18 year old being that fucking Wildebeest...
I don't feel bad for the guy who went to jail, he deserves to be in prison, had he known his lust was for Miss Piggy, the murder would have never happened...
 
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