Man suspected of threatening former Rep. Watson arrested

jackalope

Former Staff
Jan 2010
51,139
17,668
Maine
#1
Man suspected of threatening former Rep. Watson arrested
By Michael O'Brien - 01/29/11 03:28 PM ET


Police arrested a man alleged to have made death threats against former Rep. Diane Watson (D-Calif.), the L.A. Times reported Friday evening.

Police arrested a 41-year-old man suspected of making calls in which he threatened to kill Watson, the former four-term congresswoman from the Los Angeles area.

The Times reported the suspect, who was unnamed, "implicated himself" in the crime. No motive was clear.

The arrest comes in a period of heightened sensitivity about threats of violence against lawmakers since the assassination attempt against Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.).

Man suspected of threatening former Rep. Watson arrested - The Hill's Blog Briefing Room

Yet another Democratic politician is threatened with violence. I think this is the fourth? arrest for death threats against Democratic Congresspeople, former lawmakers, and/or offices that I've heard about in just the last couple weeks.

And that dosn't include Gabrielle Giffords.
 

jackalope

Former Staff
Jan 2010
51,139
17,668
Maine
#5
So? Every politician receives threats.

No 'So?'. They appear to be increasing in frequency, to me. It's not a good situation.

Also, for some reason, I don't hear about too many arrests being made for threats against Republicans. Am I missing the coverage?
 
#6
No 'So?'. They appear to be increasing in frequency, to me. It's not a good situation.

Also, for some reason, I don't hear about too many arrests being made for threats against Republicans. Am I missing the coverage?
Are you trying to make a point? Perhaps Republican legislators can see the threats for what they are? Hot air.
 

jackalope

Former Staff
Jan 2010
51,139
17,668
Maine
#10
Well, they should be taken as more than hot air but it does happen to Republican legislators as well.

Man Charged With Threatening To Kill Rep. Eric Cantor | TPM LiveWire

Thanks for reminding me of that case. And, in googling around, Rep Paul Ryan was also threatened with assassination. That case was closed without prosecution though, not because it didn't happen, but they decided the guy in the suv that pulled up next to him and shouted threats (I think while Ryan was with one of his children??) didn't really mean it.

I think those cases should be prosecuted too.

I also found out while googling that threats had been on the decline since 2001, but spiked up 300 percent after the health care vote.

And, there have been more cases of late, so things are heating up.



Here is a list from a letter to the editor in a paper, if you google, they all check out:

Tone down the Rhetoric

Published: Saturday, January 15, 2011 at 9:35 a.m.
Last Modified: Saturday, January 15, 2011 at 9:35 a.m.

Political rhetoric may not have caused the Az. shooting, but Loughner did shoot a politician.

Every day there are 30 death threats against the President and more than two dozen have been arrested. Further arrests: Greg Giusti, Charles Wilson, Byron Williams for attempted murder all influenced by Glen Beck. Charles Habermann, threats against Rep. McDermott, Charles Wilson, threats against Sen. Patty Murray. Justin Hayes, threats against Rep. Raul Grijalva. Norman Leboon, threats against Rep. Eric Cantor. John Davis, threats against Sen. Michael Bennet. Space limits the many more arrested including recent threats against Governors and Lt Governors. Except in the few cases that people have admitted being influenced by the rhetoric no one can prove it was the cause, but you also can't disprove it.
Robert Ernst
Wilmington
http://www.starnewsonline.com/article/20110115/LETTERS/110119731?Title=Tone-down-the-Rhetoric&tc=ar

Here is an article that details some of the very serious threats that never end up being prosecuted. Some of them are unnerving. This is where I was reminded about the threat against Rep Paul Ryan:



Threats to Lawmakers Rarely Lead to Charges
By CHARLIE SAVAGE and ERIC LIPTON
Published: January 19, 2011

WASHINGTON — In September 2009, a Veterans Affairs caseworker reported that a man had threatened to kill Senator John Cornyn, a Republican, and Representative Ciro Rodriguez, a Democrat, both of Texas, for failing to help him in a dispute over his retirement benefits.

In June 2009, a man called an aide to Representative Zoe Lofgren, Democrat of California, and said that if she held a town hall meeting on immigration or nuclear energy — or if he saw her on the street — he would attack her.

And in May 2009, Representative Paul Ryan, Republican of Wisconsin, was in a parking lot in his district when a man driving by shouted that the lawmaker had blood on his hands over the Iraq war, had a bulls-eye on his head and was going to die.

The result in all three cases was the same: federal prosecutors declined to charge the men because they apparently had no intention of carrying out the threats, Federal Bureau of Investigation files show.

more: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/12/us/12security.html?partner=rss&emc=rss


Here is an article that talks about the large spike in threats against lawmakers in the beginning of last year:

Exclusive: FBI details surge in death threats against lawmakers

Politico
Erika Lovley Erika Lovley – Tue May 25, 5:43 am ET

(snip ... )

There may have been more threats — the FBI won’t release information on investigations that are still open — and there will likely be more this year; Senate Sergeant at Arms Terrance Gainer says threats against members of Congress were up 300 percent in the first few months of 2010.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/politico/20100525/pl_politico/37726


Here is an article that talks about how threats about lawmakers had been declining:


http://www.upi.com/Top_News/US/2010...ional-threats-in-10-years/UPI-27971293542752/