Chicago man created his 'own personal quiet car' for two years via cellphone jammer


A Chicago man was arrested last week after he was caught using a cellphone jammer on the city's Red Line "L"-train.

According to the Christian Science Monitor, 63-year-old Dennis Nicholl enjoyed his own personal quiet car for nearly two years before he was caught.


"He's disturbed by people talking around him," attorney Charles Lauer said after a judge set bail at $10,000 while dubbing Nicholl "the cellphone police." "He might have been selfish in thinking about himself, but he didn't have any malicious intent."

According to the Chicago Tribune, photos of Nicholl holding the device on CTA trains had circulated online for months — this one was posted to reddit this winter.


He was finally caught when an undercover cop tried to use his cell phone while seated near Nicholl at 6 a.m. on Tuesday; when his call was almost immediately dropped, the officer arrested Nicholl.


He is being charged with felony unlawful interference with a public utility. Nicholl has gathered a decent amount of supporters on Twitter since his arrest was announced.


In fact, it's not the first time Nicholl has been charged with jamming cell calls, the Tribune reported. He pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge in June 2009, according to court records. He was placed under court supervision for a year, and his equipment was confiscated and destroyed.

It's a federal crime to buy or sell jammers in the U.S.

Rob covers business, economics and the environment for Fusion. He previously worked at Business Insider. He grew up in Chicago.

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