Houston, Texas, USA — Lisa Marie Garcia, 23 , a Baytown (Houston Metro) woman has been arrested after she was accused of creating fake social media accounts in her former boyfriend’s name without his knowledge, which she used to repeatedly frame him and have him arrested more than half a dozen times.
Lisa Marie Garcia is now facing felony retaliation charges and online harassment for allegedly sending herself threatening messages via fake Instagram accounts she created and a prank phone call app, making it appear as though they were from her ex-lover, Brandon Berrott.
Investigators said the accounts made it appear that the man — who is also her children’s father — was making terrorist threats against her.
Berrott was arrested eight times since September for the threatening messages – and even lost his job once — as a result of his girlfriend’s actions. Berrott was dating Garcia and another woman, who both have children by him, according to a police report..
Lisa Marie Garcia, 22, wreaked havoc in her former boyfriend’s life for several months before being taken into custody Thursday, court documents show.
The first arrest happened in September after Garcia falsely reported to police that the victim had threatened to kill her, court documents said. According to an affidavit, Garcia took copies of the message to the Baytown Police Department and the Harris County Sheriff’s Office, resulting in Berrott being arrested again and hit with seven additional charges on Oct. 21, Oct. 27 and Oct. 30.
Following the boyfriend’s arrest, investigators said the suspect set up Instagram accounts and pretended to be Berrott. Using the account, she sent messages to herself and the other woman threatening to kill them for calling the police.
Each time Berrott was released on bond, officers said Garcia would create more fake messages and then call police. The boyfriend would then be arrested or sent to court. Berrott was also falsely accused of violating the conditions of his bonds and no-contact orders, court documents said.
Garcia also claimed Berrott sent her threatening text message and the judge residing over Berrott’s cases was bribed into dropping them by the victim’s mother.
During an investigation, officers searched Berrott’s cell phone and found no evidence of the alleged messages. Detectives concluded Garcia sent the text message using a mobile app, documents said.
“She didn’t do it once, she didn’t do it twice, she did it eight different times,” Berrot’s attorney Carl Moore said. “Nobody believed [Berrott], so he was put on house arrest after making bond, as a measure to protect the accusers.”
Moore says Berrott lost his job and his family has spent tens of thousands of dollars on bonds and legal fees related to the arrests.
“I blame the Baytown Police Department as much as anyone for continuing to accept these charges without doing the proper investigation,” said Moore.
Baytown Police say Garcia was very convincing when they responded to her emergency calls. Police say they were put in a tough position when a pregnant Garcia showed them messages supposedly from Berrott saying he was going to kill her.
“Our very first and foremost priority is the preservation of life. That’s our first priority,” Baytown Police Lieutenant Steve Dorris said. “So when we see these threats like this against somebody’s life, we have to take them seriously.”
Lieutenant Dorris says this is not something that happens normally and would never want to jail an innocent man. He says investigators are now faced with difficult situations now that involve electronic manipulation.
Moore said Berrott is considering civil action against the Baytown Police Department.