MINEOLA, N.Y. – Nassau County District Attorney Madeline Singas announced that a New York State Trooper was arraigned on a grand jury indictment for allegedly threatening to post naked photos of a woman online.
Jennifer Daignault, 31, of Rome, NY, was arraigned yesterday before Judge Meryl Berkowitz and charged with Coercion in the First Degree (a D felony) and two counts of Coercion in the Second Degree (an E felony). The defendant was released on her own recognizance and is due back in court on September 23. If convicted of the top count, she faces 2-1/3 years to seven years in prison.
“The defendant allegedly ‘catfished’ an unsuspecting Nassau County woman and threatened to post her naked photos online unless the victim acquired a fake New York State identification card for the defendant,” DA Singas said. “This case highlights the need to be cautious when using online dating platforms and to limit the amount of personal information you share before meeting in person or speaking on the phone.”
DA Singas said that from May 1, 2018 to July 31, 2018, the defendant, who had multiple online identities pretending to be a man, allegedly began a text message-only relationship with the 33- year-old female victim who lives in Nassau County. They met on the dating site PlentyofFish.
Daignault received numerous naked photographs from the victim, who believed that she was communicating with a man. The defendant then allegedly used the photos to coerce the victim to go to Queens and Manhattan and attempt to purchase a fake New York State identification for Daignault. The defendant allegedly threatened the victim that if she did not comply with her demands that Daignault would post the victim’s naked photographs online.
Following a month-long investigation, Daignault was arrested on September 13, 2018.
Assistant District Attorney Evgenia Soldatos of DA Singas’ Special Victims Bureau is prosecuting this case. The defendant is represented by Gerard McCloskey, Esq.
The charges are merely accusations and the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless found guilty.