Domain names are pretty important when it comes to creating a brand identity. Imagine if your favorite brand had a weird domain name that was hard to remember, or imagine if Google wasn’t at Google.com and was at some weird and lengthy URL, wouldn’t that make you want to visit it less?
This is why cybersquatting is a problem where people register domains that they think could be valuable to someone else, and sell it back to them at a high price. Sometimes these disputes are handled in the courts, but in the case of 43-year old Sherman Hopkins Jr., he decided that he would try to hijack a domain name at gunpoint.
Last year Hopkins broke into the home of 26-year old Ethan Deyo and demanded that Deyo transfer ownership of the domain name “doitforstate.com” over to him. He held a gun to Deyo’s head and even used a stun gun on him during the entire encounter, but eventually Deyo managed to wrestle the gun away from Hopkins and shot him multiple times in the chest, to which he survived.
It is unclear as to why Hopkins wanted the domain in the first place, but regardless he has since been sentenced to 20 years in prison.
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