Chris "Birdman" Andersen: Inside double-Catfish scheme that's made him a recluse
Last year around this time, as members of the Miami Heat were embroiled in what turned out to be a second consecutive NBA-championship run, we reported that an Internet Crimes Against Children investigation targeting Chris "Birdman" Andersen was still open a full year after authorities had raided his Larkspur home. It wasn't until the following September that the former Denver Nugget was officially cleared, with authorities confirming that he'd been the victim of a bizarre, double-Catfish scheme allegedly perpetrated by a Canadian woman named Shelly Lynne Chartier.
Chris "Birdman" Andersen. More photos below.
Now, with the Heat set to kick off its quest for a third straight NBA crown against the San Antonio Spurs tonight, a new report provides the most details yet about Chartier's twisted Internet manipulations and the terrible effect they've had on Andersen's life.
On May 10, 2012, as we've reported, the Douglas County Sheriff's Office put out a press release confirming that its Internet Crimes Against Children unit had "executed a search warrant at Christopher C. Andersen (33 YO) residence in Larkspur CO." The narrative noted that the ICAC "began investigating Andersen in February 2012 in reference to information that was provided by a law enforcement agency in California," adding, "DCSO has recovered property from the residence that we believe is connected to this case."
Afterward, attorney Colin Bresee asserted Andersen's innocence of any crime and claimed he was actually the person who'd been wronged. Beginning in 2010, Bresee said Andersen had received numerous letters, some featuring racy photos, from a female fan claiming to be 21 years old; she was later identified as aspiring model Paris Roxanne, who was then seventeen. The following year, she flew to Colorado, "showing her required identification," according to a statement he provided to the Denver Post. When she left, she allegedly was upset by Andersen's lack of interest in her, and by 2012, "she threatened to retaliate if he did not provide financial remuneration" -- bounty represented by someone claiming to be her mother as items on her Amazon and Victoria's Secret wish lists plus $5,000 in cash.
An aerial shot of Andersen's home in Larkspur, as seen in a 9News image.
The key word in the previous sentence is "claiming," as is spelled out in fascinating detail by "The Birdman's Vengeful Ghost" by Newsweek's Flinder Boyd. The person impersonating the young woman's mom was allegedly Chartier, who Boyd describes as "a 29-year-old recluse with a sixth-grade education" who even those close to her family couldn't remember leaving the Manitoba house she shares with her chronically arthritic mother since age twelve or thirteen before she was hauled off by Canadian authorities to face assorted Internet-related charges in early 2013.
Chartier had set up a bogus Facebook profile as Andersen, then received a message from Roxanne. Chartier responded as if she were Andersen, then set up a fake Roxanne profile to communicate with Andersen. This is where things got complicated and sinister. Both Andersen and Roxanne believed they were sending each other Facebook messages and starting an intimate relationship, but their messages were being triangulated through Chartier's fake profile pages. Think of Chartier as a devious and malicious post office. Every message between Andersen and Roxanne was filtered through her computer, which meant she could manipulate any of their messages. And she did. Often.Chartier didn't only focus her attention on Andersen. Newsweek's Boyd lists numerous other quasi-famous celebrity victims -- and a twisted and scattershot assembly it is.
Continue for more about the double-Catfish scheme that ensnared Chris "Birdman" Andersen, including plenty of photos.