It’s been less than 24 hours since footage of a young girl, Hillary Adams, being whipped by her father, a Texas judge, spread shock and outrage across the Web. Police have been assigned to investigate, while an Internet mob has appointed itself jury and executioner.
People apparently enraged by the video of Judge William Adams beating his daughter posted his personal information on heavily trafficked sites like YouTube, 4chan, and Encyclopedia Dramatica last night. After courthouse staff reported receiving death threats, the judge’s personal cell phone and work line were disconnected, according to the IBTimes, an online news site.
Judge William Adams told the IBTimes that the beating was "not as bad as it looks on tape."
Internet users seem to disagree. A Facebook page, Don't Re-Elect Judge William Adams, had 3,000 likes this morning but had tripled to 9,000 by this afternoon.
According to Topsy, a social-media monitoring service, “Judge William Adams” was tweeted more than 4,000 times in the last 24 hours.
And Reddit users, who played a large role in bringing the video to the world’s attention, have dug up Judge William Adams prior case records to reveal he consistently rules softly in cases of alleged child abuse.
In a separate interview with an NBC affiliate in Rockfort, Texas, Hillary Adams told a reporter the abuse had been happening for years and "I thought abuse at some level was normal."
On her Twitter account, Adams admitted posting the video, but said she’d hoped it would prompt her father to seek help, not face the wrath of an angry online community.
Responding to the extreme interest her video garnered, Hillary Adams tweeted:
“No, I am floored. I thought I'd get just a little bit of validation and moral support, but this...!”
Flickr photo by SHOK-1