Case # 16HF1357

Date: November 18, 2016


SANTA ANA, Calif. – A woman was arraigned today for making false stalking and threat criminal reports against an ex-boyfriend on four separate occasions, resulting in his arrest. Stephani Renae Lawson, 25, Las Vegas, Nev., is charged with four felony counts of false imprisonment by menace, violence, fraud, or deceit, one felony count of attempted false imprisonment by menace, violence, fraud, or deceit, and one felony count of perjury. If convicted, Lawson faces a maximum of seven years of jail. The defendant is scheduled for a pre-trial hearing on Nov. 30, 2016, in Department H-7, Harbor Justice Center, Newport Beach.

Prior to September 2015, Lawson was living in Lake Forest, and is accused of creating a fake Facebook account depicting an ex-boyfriend, John Doe, posing as the victim, and sending herself numerous threats. The defendant is accused of filing multiple police reports to the Orange County Sheriff’s Department (OCSD) in which she alleged that Doe violated a restraining order, stalked, and threatened to kill the defendant. Lawson is accused of reporting to OCSD that the threats came from Doe’s Facebook account. John Doe was subsequently arrested four times between September and December 2015 and charged with multiple felonies.

On May 3, 2016, and May 4, 2016, Lawson is accused of sending herself more threats through Facebook using her own device(s) and Internet provider address.

On May 5, 2016, Lawson is accused of testifying under penalty of perjury at Doe’s preliminary hearing and alleging that Doe threatened her on May 3, 2016, and May 4, 2016, through Facebook. The Orange County District Attorney’s Office (OCDA) Bureau of Investigation conducted a follow-up investigation into the allegations Lawson made while on the witness stand.

On Sept. 28, 2016, Lawson was charged with the above crimes and a warrant was issued for her arrest. The US Marshals Service arrested the defendant in Las Vegas, Nev., and she was extradited to Orange County by the OCDA.

Charges against John Doe were dismissed on Oct. 6, 2016, at the request of the OCDA.

The Special Prosecutions Unit is dedicated to the apprehension and extradition of fugitives from anywhere in the world. OCDA partners with local law enforcement, as well as Interpol, the FBI, US Marshals, State Department, Department of Justice, and Homeland Security, in a continuous effort to prosecute fugitives, protect the public and seek justice for victims.

Senior Deputy District Attorney Mark Geller of the Family Protection Unit is prosecuting this case.