DOCUMENT: Internet, Crime

Vile Phone Prank Pulled On Iraq Vet

Pranknet sociopaths somehow find way to hit new low


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Amarillo Motel Prank

DECEMBER 14--In a new act of depravity, a pair of telephone terrorists last week gleefully humiliated an Army paratrooper during a bizarre telephone prank that resulted in the soldier actually ingesting his own waste products, The Smoking Gun has learned. The duo was so impressed with their demented handiwork that one of the pranksters declared that the 22-year-old victim--who served nearly a year in Iraq--“ain’t getting a PTSD from Iraq, he’s getting it from…the call.”

The December 5 hoax was perpetrated by Tariq Malik, whose online crime spree TSG has frequently detailed, and a second member of Pranknet, the odious Internet cabal founded by Malik, a 26-year-old Canadian citizen. Malik was assisted on last Sunday’s call to a Motel 6 in Amarillo, Texas by Steven Brown, a 43-year-old computer programmer from McHenry, Illinois.

Like fellow denizens of Pranknet--which is also known these days as “Prank U”--Brown hides behind a nickname (he prefers variations including the word “zeus”) and anonymously harasses subjects via calls placed over Skype. This is the first time Brown, a veteran Pranknet figure who apparently thought his anonymity was secure, has been exposed for his involvement with the group, which is primarily stocked with vandals 20 years his junior. TSG unmasked Brown with the aid of a confidential source and a review of certain business records.

An acquaintance described Brown as a rail-thin pothead who rarely ventures from his residence at 4511 Parkway Avenue (where he works from home). Brown did not return a message left by TSG on his cell phone. He later removed his outgoing message, which contained his voice. And by yesterday morning, Brown’s number had been disconnected.

According to court records, Brown is the divorced father of a 16-year-old daughter (he also adopted his wife’s son, who is now 20). During divorce proceedings, a judge issued a May 2000 order of protection against Brown after his wife said he threatened to kill her and “take our children where I couldn’t find them.” Sharon Brown also alleged that “he also was physical with me.”

Malik, known online as “dex,” believes that he is beyond the reach of U.S. law enforcement owing to his residency in Windsor, Ontario (though this may prove to be a miscalculation on his part). Brown, however, may have more immediate cause for concern over the Amarillo hoax. Over the past year, Texas cops have shown little hesitancy in arresting (and convicting) two Pranknet members for separate hoaxes committed in the state. In fact, James Tyler Markle, formerly known as “Prankster,” was sentenced last month to five years in prison and shipped off to the Texas State Penitentiary at Huntsville.


The Motel 6 call came late last Sunday evening, as Malik & Co. were trying to prank guests at the budget chain, which is a preferred Pranknet target since callers can get connected to a random room by simply keying in its number. The call was broadcast live in the prank group’s chat room and on the web site.

Around 11 PM, Brown dialed Room 119 at Motel 6’s Amarillo East location off Interstate 40 (pictured at left). The phone was answered by a California native who recently left the Army after several years of service. The man--who will be identified here by only his first name, Samuel--was part of an airborne infantry regiment headquartered at Fort Bragg in North Carolina. The paratrooper’s unit spent nearly a year in Iraq, according to military records. Samuel is pictured above in a photo taken during that deployment.

Using a fake name, Brown told Samuel he was calling from the motel’s front desk. Claiming that, “we’ve got a bit of a situation that needs your attention at this point,” Brown told Samuel that the prior occupant of his room “has just reported to us that they have contracted the H1N1 flu virus.” Samuel replied, “Oh, shit.” Brown went on to say that, “we are in contact now with the hospital and the doctor and that they’re telling us that our normal standard sanitation procedures may not have killed entirely the virus.”

The beginning of the December 5 hoax call can be heard here:

As Malik lurked silently on the Skype call, Brown told Samuel that he would patch him through to a doctor who was en route to the motel. Brown then pressed two numbers on his phone, pretending to somehow transfer Samuel to the doctor.

Enter Malik, pretending to be “Dr. Jeff Anderson.” He told Samuel that the room’s previous guest had been quarantined with swine flu, and that he had been in contact with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The CDC, Malik said, had provided him with a list of “steps and procedures” that need to be followed since Samuel “was in the incubation period.”

Over the next 30 minutes, Malik led Samuel through progressively more demented directions that purportedly would protect the young ex-soldier from contracting the H1N1 virus. He first told Samuel to drink a cup of water and then try to “induce vomiting” by putting two fingers down his throat. Since the degradation of victims for the amusement of listeners is a core Pranknet goal, Malik was concerned with audibility, and asked Samuel, “Will the phone reach the bathroom?”

As Samuel could be heard loudly gagging and attempting to retch in the backgroud, Brown briefly got on the phone to assure the online audience, “Yes, it’s live. Yes, it’s real.” Brown could also be heard giggling at points. 

After two lengthy attempts, Samuel reported that he was unable to vomit.

Undeterred, Malik then announced that, for safety’s sake, Samuel would have to urinate in a cup. The ex-paratrooper complied, reporting that he had filled the container halfway. That’s when Malik announced that to “kill the incubation period and prevent yourself from expiring in that state,” Samuel would have to drink the urine. The “antibodies and the ammonia in the urine is going to detoxify the virus,” Malik assured Samuel.

Samuel then consumed the urine. For his audience’s amusement, Malik, pictured at left, made sure to ask how it tasted. “Really salty,” replied Samuel.

If the call had ended at this point, it would have been considered “epic” by Pranknet followers. While getting a hotel guest to break windows or toss a TV out a window has become commonplace, getting someone to drink urine is quite an accomplishment. [Markle succeeded in doing this last year at a Kentucky hotel--though he is currently the subject of a felony investigation as a result of that vile episode.] 

But Malik is a sociopath. So the gullible and the naïve and the easily conned and the befuddled are deserving of continued brutalization.

He then told Samuel that a stool sample was needed. “There’s a trash bag I could use,” Samuel offered. Malik countered by saying that a pillowcase would be a better choice. Samuel replied, “The pillowcase? Alright.” He then put down the phone and embarked on providing the sample.

“This motherfucker is crazy,” Malik whispered to the audience listening as the prank continued to unfold. As they waited for Samuel to return to the phone, Brown was again heard giggling, while Malik announced, “I want to try to get him to eat the shit.”

When Samuel got back on the line, he reported having defecated in the pillowcase. Malik told him to retrieve the pillowcase from the bathroom and return to the phone. Brown whispered a possible direction the prank could go: “Smear in the face, maybe.”

Instead, nearly 15 minutes into the prank call, Malik directed Samuel to bring the pillowcase to the front desk, where it would be collected by a Motel 6 employee. He also had Samuel provide him with his cell phone number, since “we have to do a follow-up as well.”

After hanging up with Samuel, Malik quickly called the motel’s front desk and pretended to be the occupant of Room 119. When Motel 6 worker Megan Ramirez answered the phone, Malik, using Samuel’s full name, complained that his room was filthy and that he was “so sick of the service” and angry that he was going to “shit in my fucking pillowcase and I’m gonna leave that on your front desk.” Ramirez, remaining composed, said that, “It’s a good thing my door is locked,” and threatened to call police.

He then called Samuel, who reported that he had arrived at the lobby, but that the door was locked. The desk clerk, Samuel added, was on the phone.

Ramirez, as it turned out, was calling the cops. According to an Amarillo Police Department report, Ramirez told a 911 operator that a customer was outside the locked lobby doors “threatening to poop in a pillow case and throw it” at her.

Ramirez's 911 call to police can be heard here:

For the next ten minutes, Malik placed calls back and forth to Samuel and the motel’s front desk. When Ramirez wouldn’t pick up one call, Brown exclaimed, “She’s scared to death.” But unable to get Ramirez to open the door (and accept the specimen), Malik directed Samuel to return to his room with the pillowcase.

“I understand this is very difficult,” Malik said before explaining that Samuel would have to ingest a small amount of the fecal matter to keep “the symptoms from setting in.” Malik added, “I understand, sir, that this is unusual, but you just have to look at this, you know, like it’s a life and death matter.”

Samuel then asked, “How do I know that this isn’t like a fucking prank or something?” When Malik assured him it was “not a joking matter,” Samuel said, “Alright.”

After the phone went silent for a bit, Malik asked Samuel what was going on. “I’m about to fucking eat this shit,” the 22-year-old replied. As Samuel was gagging in the background, a loud pounding was heard on the front door of Room 119. Officer Daniel Treadwell had arrived in response to Ramirez’s 911 call. Since Samuel’s cell phone was still connected, Pranknet listeners overheard Treadwell questioning him. At one point, the cop sternly told him, “Wash your hands.”

The arrival of the cops left Malik so ecstatic that screeched a two-word appraisal of his manipulative skills: “God status!”

After the call was disconnected, Malik and Brown were giddy. “That was fucking crazy,” Malik exclaimed. Brown, the chat room’s graybeard, exulted, “That’s a record. No one’s ever shit and ever eaten shit before I don’t think.” Malik added, “Talk about setting the fucking bar!”

Audio of Malik and Brown celebrating can be heard here:

The prank call was so exhilarating for the two black hearts that they seemed unsure it could be topped. “I’m sorry for still living in this moment,” Malik said. “I’m basking in the glory right now. I don’t want to dial another number just yet.” Brown remarked, “How you gonna follow that up?” He added, “It just all seems so mundane now.”

It was probably the closest to post-coital glow that the two degenerates had experienced.

Listen to the pair “basking in the glory” here:

Police records show that cops were summoned back to the Motel 6 30 minutes after Officer Treadwell departed. This time, an employee called 911 to report that other hotel guests were receiving prank calls from someone claiming to be in Room 119. The male caller “was talking to them about fecal matter” and how “the front desk clerks are telling him to ingest it.” 

When she reached the property, Officer Vinilla King went to Room 119. While there, Samuel’s cell phone rang and King picked it up. Malik was on the other end of the line--and the call was being broadcast live to Pranknet’s listeners.

With his voice electronically altered, Malik claimed to be “Melinda,” a mother who had caught her son “making some sort of prank call.” King, unaware that she was being hoaxed, confirmed that, “Your son’s been prank calling.” The cop added, “Your son needs to stop this because if we have to go any further with this we will make a report out of it and we will have a warrant issued for his arrest. So he needs to stop this phone prank stuff.”

“Melinda” asked King what her son did, “because he won’t tell me.” King explained that, “He called this phone number and I guess told this guy over here that the room is filled with H1N1 and that he needed to put feces all over everywhere to make it go away.” The cop added, “I don’t know how your son got this number…but you need to take his phone away from him.”

King then handed the phone to Samuel so that “Melinda” could apologize to him.

Unaware that he was actually again speaking to “Dr. Jeff Anderson,” Samuel gave a brief recap of the night’s events, noting that he had consumed his own urine to avoid contracting swine flu and defecated in a pillowcase. He added that he had “considered” eating the feces. At that point, the call was disconnected.


Since TSG began examining Pranknet last year, two of its members have been convicted of crimes related to prank calls they placed. And though others have hit the mattresses in fear of being publicly linked to the group, Malik has actually succeeded in growing his audience after it sagged precipitously following an August 2009 story in these pages.

He has done that primarily by returning to the kind of telephonic criminality upon which Pranknet first made its name. So, from time to time, TSG will endeavor to introduce our readers to the (mostly) Men of Pranknet. Their real names, occupations, and assorted online crimes. So look for our future unmasking of the miscreant known as “DTA_mike.” (4 pages)

Comments (21)

hey in the army you have guys screaming at you to do this and do that and if u dont they will get in your face scream every known crude, degrading name in the book to you. in the end you follow orders no matter what the cost. these two men are by god the worst people in the entire world. you dont tell someone to eat their own shiat and end up laughing and basking in the glory, this isnt funny and they shoul be punished terribly and be forced to do wat they did to him
He's a young guy and a soldier, cut him some slack, people. In the army, you get obesceince nailed into you 24/7: you don't question anything. If he's fresh out of the service, he probably doesn't question authority figures as you or I would. Malik must be on some kind of semi-suicidal kick because there is no way that he's going to avoid jail for long. Even after being "outed" by TSG (awesome detective work, btw) he continues to prank people? The guy's got no self-control whatsoever.
Im sorry but my god. I heard that we have a high number of applicants not even qualifying to enter the service based on written tests. If eating your own crap and drinking urine is accepted into the military we'll be in iraq and afghanistan for the next 5000 years. How can you blame the prankers for these types of jokes? I wouldn't care of the president called me and told me to do something like this for 10 million cash I wouldn't think it was for real. And let's not also forget why we have an 'untraceable' telephone system like we do. It's not because the people can't be traced it's because the system was designed this way so that telemarketers and bill collectors can harass you and THEY not be traced. So you can thank the phone monopolies for this wonderful feature. They bring you *69 when the feature to always just randomly change your number was always in the system. Debt collectors have been calling as 00010202 and other numbers for years.
honestly I feel like these guys need to be stopped but at the same time who eats their own shiat because a stranger on the phone told them to? This reminds me of when all the social networking sites first started and everyone was saying to stay away from them because there were rapists running rampant, when in reality you should just be smart and not put too much personal information on the site and for the love of christ.. don't meet up with a stranger because 'he seemed trustworthy'. that just makes you look stupid. It is unfortunate that someone would go so low to do this to a vet but the vet should've known better.
In response to the comments made by the asshat Michael Ivanov I would love to see you say those things to my nephew's face who is currently in Iraq, you would probably get your face rearranged.
Consequences... Be careful!!!! What you sow, so shall you reap.
1) it is not ok to post someone's address for millions of people. he could be killed, and i am shocked....shocked that this would be published. they should publish the writers home address. i'll try to find it. 2) anyone who drinks their own pee and eats their own poop because some guy on the phone says so...deserves to drink pee and eat poop. if this happened to me, i would laugh and joke back. if this is the average intelligence of our military it is no surprise we lost in iraq and are losing in afghanistan. what an idiot, i hope he has nightmares everyday for the rest of his life for being so stupid. what kind of moron would do that, he should have just called the front desk and asked. i mean jesus h christ, what an idiot, i can't believe someone that stupid was even allowed in the army. Apparently they'll take any version of forrest gump these days. this is what's wrong with America...the people representing us to enemy countries have IQ's in single digits. i can't believe this story is even true...but even more than that i CANNOT BELIEVE all the comments that sympathize with this moron. if it was a kid with down syndrome in a child's home i would sympathize...but we are talking about a grown man with a military background. if some nerd stoner can convince an Army combat vet to eat his own crap, HOW CAN WE EXPECT TO BEAT THE TERRORIST
Are you kidding me that "it's not ok" to publish these guys addresses??? Even if this guy was an idiot for believing them, these lowlife pranksters have made themselves public figures. They are pathetic losers who pull moronic crap (pun intended) and do vile things to other humans.They are getting just what they deserve - the same abject humiliation they take so much happiness in doling out. What's unbelievable is that anyone in actually trying to defend them. Now THAT'S what's truly wrong with America today: People defending psychos and criminals above good people. That's makes me want to vomit more than the pee and poop.
What's 'epic' is how someone can spend their lives living like such losers. 26 years old and still pranking people? obsessed with poop and peepee...teehee! 46 years old and trolling the net, pranking people thru the phone? This is something done in 3rd grade, after school bored with friends that end up in juvey in 6th grade.imagine telling your cellie you just five years for prankcalling people? few days later, they throw a paper party and find out they are chomos ontop of being punks. thats not exactly the jacket you want to wear in the clink...but it was 'epic'
Can't wait for them to get raped in prison...
i dont understand y you people are so pissed at this malik character, sure it was *** up, but all he did was talk, the other guy is the one that listened, for someone that was in the army he really didnt have any sense, every survivalist knows the only benefits to drinking ur own urine to stop dehydration, most people know that inducing vomitting cant eat at the liner of your throat and cause shiat to further infiltrate your system, and everyone knows that eating shiat is just gross, its samuels fault he chose to not hang up he chose to take their word instead of hanging up and going to see a dr in person to see for himself if he possibly really had h1n1 he didnt, he chose to listen and comply
A "cell phone" called through a motel switchboard? A "cell phone" with a cord too short to reach the bathroom? Was this "CELL PHONE" made in Poland, or just the story?
I couldn't even read the article this time, since the other articles were full of these vile men and their horrible actions. These idiots need to get their asses slammed in jail.
Not just dumb, Army dumb.
Malik is mine. Arrangements for Brown in the States is being arranged for. There will be a better story.
Is it legal to send dog sh*t to Canada? It would be funny to go to the local dog park and scoop up a few pounds, put it in an old biscuit tin, seal it up really well so it doesn't smell and drop it in the mail with a TON of stamps. Better yet, coat the rim of the tin with that prank itching powder. Also, drive a few states or cities away from your locale to drop in some random public mail box, that's so its not traceable. Plus, put a fake return address on it to make it look legit. Seriously, the Unabomber got away with sending bombs to completely innocent people for years until his brother ratted him out; why couldn't some random vigilantes get away with sending prank packages to this loser? Like the cops would care if he kept getting smelly junk through the mail anyway. I think I might have some old gym socks lying around that might meet the smelly criteria ;) Or better yet, do a reverse prank on him, scambaiter style. Con him and his loser minions into doing something stupid. Does anyone know where these other losers work? Or how about tipping the cops off on Mr. Pothead and maybe they'll raid his house or something. Seriously though, I really don't know why he hasn't been arrested yet. Look at the havoc this loser has caused; I'm sure Texas wants this guy BAD! let him do a few years at Huntsville and then we'll see if he likes pranking people this much!
I feel bad for the guy but why you would do any of that is beyond me. It's like those people who forward those emails that saying you'll get 5 cents for every forward. You really think Microsoft is doing that? Really? But anyway, someone go firebomb this guy's house please. Thanks.
Thesmokinggun reported earlier this year that Malik lives with his mother at 1637 Assumption Street, ground floor apartment B, in Windsor, Ontario, Canada
Please, please honor the comment: home addresses and pictures. These lowlife shiatheads need some of their own medicine. Surely there are laws that they broke? Can't the guy they tricked sue for emotional damages. Take their asses to court - put them in jail - they'll find out quickly how easily the sphincter muscle can be enlarged. Then who'll have the last laugh.
Scumbuckets like this make me question my (ordinarily quite strong) belief in the due process of law. Wonder if this latest victim being ex-military may result in some self-help retribution against the wall-eyed geek Maliq. Not that I am encouraging vigilantism; but if anyone is so inclined, be sure you get the right guy. There are a lot of people with that name, and unlike the toad in question, most of them are not a waste of oxygen.
home addresses and more pictures please.