The Slatest

Former Democratic Staffer Arrested for Allegedly Doxing Senate Republicans and Posting Personal Contact Info to Wikipedia

The U.S. Capitol and the Washington Monument at sunrise.
AFP Contributor/Getty Images

The Capitol Police arrested a 27-year-old former congressional staffer, who appears to have worked for a handful of Democrats on the Hill, for allegedly doxing Republican senators and editing their Wikipedia pages to include personal information, including their home addresses. Police identified Jackson Cosko as the suspect Wednesday night and accused him of posting “private, identifying information (doxing) about one or more United States Senators to the internet.”

During the Brett Kavanaugh confirmation hearings, which erupted into a national brawl last week with the airing of sexual assault allegations by Christine Blasey Ford, the home addresses, home phone numbers, and cellphone numbers of three Republican members of the Judiciary Committee, Sens. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, and Orrin Hatch and Mike Lee of Utah, were posted on their respective Wikipedia pages. On Monday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s home addresses, in Washington and in Kentucky, were published on his page.

“Cosko was recently an unpaid intern for Texas Democrat Sheila Jackson Lee. He no longer works there and the office is ‘cooperating with law enforcement,’ ” Roll Call reports. “He previously worked for Democratic Sens. Maggie Hassan of New Hampshire and California’s Barbara Boxer, who has since retired. Cosko was most recently listed in the Senate directory phone book as Hassan’s ‘legislative correspondent/systems administrator.’ His LinkedIn profile says he left Hassan’s office in May 2018.” It appears, from Cosko’s LinkedIn page, he returned to school this fall for a master’s course in engineering, cybersecurity policy, and compliance at George Washington University.

The edits attributed to Cosko were made from what appeared to be an IP address affiliated with the Capitol, which was picked up and broadcast by the Twitter account @congressedits, which monitors Wikipedia changes made from within the Capitol.