In 2014, Joseph Lazarus matched with a girl on the dating app Tinder.
The now 32-year-old Texas man had a lot going for him: a Marine Reserve, Lazarus was employed at a high-end car dealership in Houston and was also venturing into a startup in the oil industry.Screenshot/KTRK
In 2016, he was fired from his position at the dealership when his boss saw an unsettling post on the Internet accusing his employee of raping “fat chicks.” It was just part of a long, twisted saga involving the girl Lazarus had met through the app.
As the Houston Chronicle reports, the relationship between Lazarus and the unnamed woman lasted about three months. He described their dating life as “normal,” going out to dinner and such. Three months into the relationship, though, Lazarus didn’t think there was enough of a connection so he broke it off. The woman wanted to remain friends, but Lazarus didn’t feel that was for best.
Months after ending the relationship, the woman allegedly began sending Lazarus disturbing text messages. The man has alleged that in one of the messages, the woman threatened to claim he raped her if he didn’t pay her $10,000.
From there it only got worse.
It an interview with KTRK, Lazarus claimed the woman didn’t just attack him but went after his family:
“She targeted the organization my sister was working for and sent them messages of me being a child molester, a rapist, a murderer,” he said.
The woman reportedly targeted his friends, too. Lazarus claimed the former girlfriend sent messages to friends accusing him of sending her sex toys instead of flowers and calling him a “rapist, liar, cheater.” He told the Chronicle:
“I don’t know what she’s talking about. I certainly didn’t mail her any sex toys,” Lazarus said.
Then came the day Lazarus’s boss called him into his office.
According to the Chronicle, the man’s boss had seen a post about Lazarus on the user-submitted gossip site, TheDirty.com.Screenshot/KTKR
Along with the headline “Joseph Lazarus is a Creepy Butcher Marine Farmer,” the post accused Lazarus of making “creepy” sexual advances, bragging about sexual conquests, and of rape— specifically saying that he “would have sex/rape fat chicks just to amuse his friends.”
Lazarus was fired as a result of the post because his employer did not want to risk the company’s reputation.
The allegations against Lazarus have been brutal, he says:
“I feel terrible. I feel like I’m living in a nightmare I can’t escape.”
However, the woman’s actions have not gone unchecked. Lazarus has filed a lawsuit against her for defamation, extortion, and for costing him his job. The lawsuit is reportedly seeking $200,000 in damages.
Lazarus’s lawyer, Joe Matthew, said the woman’s behavior has destroyed his client’s life. He told KTKR in part:
“It’s destroyed his life … You Google him and the first thing that comes up is the posting on [The]Dirty.com. These are all accusations … What does he do?”
According to KTRK, although Lazarus has retained legal counsel, he and his attorney have not taken their case to the police. They have, however, filed a complaint with the FBI:
“I just want to be left alone. I just want to be able to live my life,” Lazarus said
According to the Chronicle, Lazarus’s attorney has provided counsel in more than a dozen revenge-porn cases in just six years. His current client is the first in which the alleged victim is male.