Orange County Man Pleads Guilty to Stalking Charge for Harassment Campaign Against Professional Online Gamer
LOS ANGELES – An Orange County man pleaded guilty today to a federal criminal charge for stalking a professional online gamer during a long-running harassment campaign.
Evan Baltierra, 29, of Trabuco Canyon, pleaded guilty to one count of stalking, a crime that carries a statutory maximum sentence of five years in federal prison.
According to his plea agreement, Baltierra met the victim, a prominent professional gamer, at a gaming convention in Anaheim in November 2019. After this meeting, Baltierra asked to meet the victim in her hometown in Canada, which made her feel uncomfortable. After the victim blocked Baltierra on various social media accounts, beginning in June 2020, Baltierra created hundreds of social media accounts to send the victim threatening messages. One message sent to the victim via Twitter in January 2021 read in part, “[t]imes ticking…waiting for the right opportunity.”
In October 2020, Baltierra hired an unknown third party through an instant messaging mobile application to create multiple photoshopped nude images of the victim that placed her face onto pornographic images. From November 2020 to March 2022, Baltierra posted the photoshopped nude images to multiple pornographic websites and internet forums. He also sent the images to the victim’s friends and family. Baltierra also posted links to the images on various social media websites and told others online to search for the victim’s name to see naked pictures of her.
The victim obtained a temporary restraining order against Baltierra in January 2021. After the protective order was served on him, Baltierra began posting the victim’s personal information – including her real name and city of residence, which were listed on the protective order – to social media websites and during her live video game streams. Baltierra also posted the victim’s Twitter handle to pornographic websites along with the photoshopped nude images he had created.
During the victim’s live streams of video games, Baltierra used multiple accounts to continually post harassing messages. Baltierra’s spamming of the victim made it impossible for her to stream herself playing video games and forced her to stop streaming in February 2021.
In June 2021, two months after Baltierra and the victim reached a settlement in which he agreed to not contact her or her family and friends in exchange for the victim dissolving the temporary restraining order, Baltierra called the victim’s local police department. In that phone call, Baltierra requested the police conduct a welfare check of the victim by lying to the police that the victim had made threats online that she was going to commit suicide. Baltierra also attempted to obtain the victim’s home address during that phone call. The police later visited the victim’s home for a welfare check.
From January 2022 to March 2022, Baltierra sent threatening messages to the victim via various social media accounts, including one messages that read, “get a casket ready.” In March 2022, Baltierra wrote a letter to the parents of the victim’s boyfriend, which stated, in part, that the situation was going to end badly for her.
Baltierra also admitted to sending the victim an unsolicited suspicious package in March 2022 that later was determined to contain a box of condoms.
United States District Judge Fernando M. Olguin scheduled an October 20 sentencing hearing in this case.
The FBI investigated this matter.
Assistant United States Attorney Jake D. Nare of the Santa Ana Branch Office is prosecuting this case.