Pair arrested after ‘threatening’ emojis sent on Facebook, deputies say

SPARTANBURG, S.C. (WSPA) – Two men face stalking charges after Spartanburg County deputies in South Carolina said the pair used Facebook to send threatening emoticons to another man.

Deputies said David Fuentes, 29, and Matthew Cowan, 29, each sent text messages through Facebook using emoticons of a closed fist, an “L-shaped,” hand gesture that appeared to resemble a gun and an ambulance.

It’s unclear what prompted the text messages, but deputies said the pair have a history of problems with the man who filed the complaint. Deputies said the alleged victim filed an incident report on May 14 against both Fuentes and Cowan, claiming the pair tried to assault him at a house.

“I use them almost every day,” said Desiree Staggs of Spartanburg, “and I’m very specific about what I send because it can be taken literally out of text.”

If convicted, Fuentes and Cowan each faces up to five years in prison. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review. Note: Comments containing links are not allowed.

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