IDGNS: People who followed the case heard about this conference call with Cisco engineers, and the defense said he was reluctant to hand over passwords to people who were not authorized to have them. There was an HR person in the room, a police detective, and the chief operating officer of his division, Richard Robinson.
Chilton: It was really hard for us to get through that part. We said, "OK, what policies may there have been that defined an authorized user?" Well, the city didn't have any procedures. There was no policy that was formally adopted that people were supposed to follow. It was this amorphous thing.
Eventually we looked at it and we saw that in late June his manager had requested certain accounts to be created that would have access to certain routers and switches. And he did create those accounts, and he sent that back in an email with the user IDs and passwords, to which Richard Robinson was also copied. If his big concern was that Richard Robinson was not authorized to be a user, why -- just a week before -- did he copy him on an email that has user IDs and passwords?
IDGNS: If you're doing this stuff in the course of your job, it's not criminal. There must have been a point at which you decided that what he was doing was outside of his job description?
Chilton: Essentially, one of his job duties was to allow the network to be maintained. So when he went into that meeting on July 9th, he was told he was being reassigned, therefore he was not going to be working on the FiberWAN any more. Somebody has to get access, and he refused to provide that. So he's leaving this very critical network in the city's hands, but saying that nobody can maintain it.
IDGNS: What do you think he was thinking at that point? The defense made it sound like this was a high pressure meeting and he choked.
Chilton: I think he went into that meeting probably thinking he was being fired. Definitely he knew that there were some employment changes coming. He had received an email the week prior from his manager saying, "We're about to go through organizational changes." So that was proof to us he knew something was going to happen organizationally that would affect his employment. That very morning before he went into the meeting, he received a phone call from one of his co-workers saying, "We've just been told you've been reassigned."
I think he was used to, over the years, dealing with Herb Tong, his manager, who didn't understand how to deal with him effectively. He would let him get away with everything, and he was kind of weak-willed and would let things slide. And I think Terry Childs was used to that and not thinking that the consequences of what he was about to do would be greater than what they normally would be if he was dealing with Herb Tong. Now he's dealing with Richard Robinson [Tong's boss] and the police.
And I think he left that meeting honestly thinking, "OK, they're going to try to get into this network and they're not going to be able to." He even sent an email the next day, saying, "I know you all are trying to figure out how I can get into this network."
So he knew nobody else could get in, and I think he had the assumption that they would say, "We need you back to maintain this network." And that obviously did not happen.
IDGNS: Since the verdict you've finally been able to read what people are saying about the case. Any surprises there?
Chilton: No, not really. Most of the news stories that covered it really boiled it down to something simple such as he was in a meeting and asked to give up his passwords and refused. There were so many other things happening that don't get put in the news that really led to the whole situation happening. It wasn't simply he wouldn't give up his username and password. It was two years of building up to this point.