BOISE – Joel Waters, 44, of Wallowa, Oregon, was sentenced to the maximum sentence of 60 months in federal prison for interstate stalking, U.S. Attorney Josh Hurwit announced today. Waters’ victim appeared in court and provided a victim impact statement. “We were all living in fear. We were all hostages in an invisible prison of Joel’s making,” the victim said.
According to court records, between October 7, 2020, and December 24, 2020, Waters traveled between Oregon and Idaho to harass and intimidate the victim who was residing in Boise. Waters took dogs from the victim’s home and car, slashed the tires on the victim’s vehicle, set fire to the victim’s residence in Oregon on two occasions, placed a tracking device on the victim’s vehicle, set fire to the victim’s vehicle, and sent the victim numerous harassing emails. Some of Waters’ acts occurred in violation of a civil protection order that the victim had obtained against Waters in Oregon.
“The defendant’s crimes in this case were horrific, dangerous, and deeply affected the courageous victim,” said U.S. Attorney Hurwit. “I am glad that justice has been served and honored to support the victim as she moves forward with her life.”
“We’re thankful to our investigators as well as our federal partners for ensuring that Joel Waters is held accountable for his crimes,” said BPD Criminal Investigation Division Captain Matt Jones. “The victim in this case was terrorized by Waters for months and while we can’t undo the impact this had on their life, we hope this sentencing brings them some peace.”
Chief U.S. District Judge David C. Nye also sentenced Waters to three years of supervised release and ordered him to pay a $2,000 fine. Judge Nye sentenced Waters to an additional 30 days in prison for contempt of court as a result of Waters’ behavior in the courtroom at sentencing.
U.S. Attorney Josh Hurwit commended the cooperative efforts of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Boise Police Department, and the Oregon State Police, which led to charges. Assistant U.S. Attorney Kassandra McGrady prosecuted this case.