March 24th, 2010
01:46 PM ET
5 years ago

FBI investigating Perriello incident in Virginia

The FBI is investigating a 'suspicious incident' at the home of Rep. Tom Perriello's brother.
The FBI is investigating a 'suspicious incident' at the home of Rep. Tom Perriello's brother.

Washington (CNN) - Days after his address was posted online by a Virginia Tea Party activist, the FBI and local law enforcement officials are investigating a "suspicious incident" at the home of Rep. Tom Perriello's brother.

A line to the propane tank on his brother's gas grill had been "severed," an aide to the Democratic congressman told CNN.

"It was enough that he could smell the gas," the aide said.

The Albemarle County Fire Marshal's office confirmed they are investigating the incident - which took place in Ivy, Virginia - along with the FBI.

"While officials are not willing to characterize the exact nature of the incident because of the ongoing investigation, it did not involve an immediate threat to occupants of the residence," Lee Catlin, Community Relations Director for the Fire Marshal, told CNN. "However officials are taking the incident very seriously and conducting a vigorous investigation. Additional details will be released as the investigation continues."

Catlin said county officials joined the investigation late Tuesday after a request from the FBI.

Politico reported Monday that a Tea Party activist in Lynchburg, angry over Perriello's vote in favor of health care reform legislation, had posted the address of Perriello's brother online and encouraged other activists to "stop by" and weigh in on the bill. The activist had apparently meant to post the congressman's home address but mistakenly published his brother's.

Perriello, who represents Virginia's conservative-leaning 5th congressional district, encompassing central and southern parts of the state. He was narrowly elected to his first term in 2008 and is considered one of the most vulnerable House Democrats in 2010.

On Wednesday, Perriello's office issued the following statement:

“My number one priority right now is ensuring the safety of my brother’s family, and I am grateful to law enforcement for their excellent work. While it is too early to say anything definitive regarding political motivations behind this act, it’s never too early for political leaders to condemn threats of violence, particularly as threats to other Members of Congress and their children escalate. And so I ask every member of House and Senate leadership to state unequivocally tonight that it is never OK to harm or threaten elected officials and their families with anything more than political retribution. Here in America, we settle our political differences at the ballot box.”

Filed under: 2010 • Popular Posts • Tom Perriello • Virginia
soundoff (194 Responses)
  1. MikeH

    When our brave troops come back from Iraq, they'll have been well trained on how to deal with these Right-Wing Tea Terrorists.

    March 24, 2010 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  2. Not surprised

    Glenn Beck needs to read his constitution again...Bachmann too.

    Smith Act 18 U.S. Code § 2385 (2000).

    § 2385. Advocating Overthrow of Government.

    Whoever knowingly or willfully advocates, abets, advises, or teaches the duty, necessity, desirability, or propriety of overthrowing or destroying the government of the United States or the government of any State, Territory, District or Possession thereof, or the government of any political subdivision therein, by force or violence, or by the assassination of any officer of any such government; or

    Whoever, with intent to cause the overthrow or destruction of any such government, prints, publishes, edits, issues, circulates, sells, distributes, or publicly displays any written or printed matter advocating, advising, or teaching the duty, necessity, desirability, or propriety of overthrowing or destroying any government in the United States by force or violence, or attempts to do so; or

    Whoever organizes or helps or attempts to organize any society, group, or assembly of persons who teach, advocate, or encourage the overthrow or destruction of any such government by force or violence; or becomes or is a member of, or affiliates with, any such society, group, or assembly of persons, knowing the purposes thereof–

    Shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than twenty years, or both, and shall be ineligible for employment by the United States or any department or agency thereof, for the five years next following his conviction.

    March 24, 2010 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  3. john in binghamton NY

    Sounds like the act of a Tea Party Terrorist. Time to arrest them all and waterboard them until the confess.

    March 24, 2010 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  4. bob

    Tom ,have you had your gas line cut by neighborhood kids? Or you just
    giving the typical republican response ?

    March 24, 2010 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  5. Wisconsonite - Republicans Do NOT Care About Working Class Americans

    The Republican Party has been ginning up anger and fear at an unprecedented rate since our first African American President took office. They have been using the lunatic-right-fringe arm of the GOP, namely the Tea Party, to incite violence against anyone who doesn't agree with them and will do anything to try to regain power.

    March 24, 2010 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  6. Bubba

    What do you expect from thugs who scream "Kill the Democrats!" at their rallies? They are just like the Nazis in the 1930s.

    March 24, 2010 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  7. Jim In Miami

    'It' has started – soon Limbaugh and Beck will be in federal prison – 'pockets' of southern racist 'baggers' will have been dispatched by the U.S. military – "Faux" will be off the air – the GOP will be finished as a political party – the 'Blue Dog" Dems will split off to form a new 'conservative' party. The new world is dawning....

    March 24, 2010 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  8. A Real American

    "And who wants to lay odds that the VA AG won't do a darn thing?"

    He's too busy filing frivolous, go-nowhere lawsuits to do his job.

    March 24, 2010 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  9. E. Elliott

    Notice how Tea Bagger sound so much more patriotic than ignorant white bigot? But it means the same.

    March 24, 2010 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  10. licnyc

    Americas own Al-Qaeda, AKA tea baggers

    March 24, 2010 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  11. A Real American

    Or was that VA's Governor who signed a frivolous, go-nowhere bill? There are so many frivolous, go-nowhere lawsuits and bills being signed and filed by Republicans these days, it's hard to tell the players apart anymore.

    March 24, 2010 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  12. Jen

    This is unacceptable. The Department of Defense Dictionary of Military Terms defines terrorism as the calculated use of unlawful violence or threat of unlawful violence to inculcate fear; intended to coerce or to intimidate governments or societies in the pursuit of goals that are generally POLITICAL, religious, or ideological.

    I certainly hope that these nuts realize they are threatening terrorism.

    March 24, 2010 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  13. JK Ashburn, VA

    Hmmm. Wonder why the FBI and Justice department declined to investigate voter intimidation when armed Black Panthers were hanging around outside polling stations in Philadelphia on election day in 2008. Oh that's right, they only make a big deal when their own party can score political points.

    March 24, 2010 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  14. Justin

    Pretty disgusting non-American terrorism. Their actions are representative to the entire Tea Party. While they try to "take back America" they don't realize that America was taken back from them.

    March 24, 2010 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  15. patriot

    To the right leaning wing nuts, what's next? Jack boots? Burning crosses? We already have bricks through windows. It is not a long step to Kristallnacht at this rate.

    As an independent, the conservative movement is simply losing credibility. A paucity of ideas is not made up for by rhetoric or coercion through violence.

    March 24, 2010 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  16. rosslaw

    No doubt President Obama will now be castigated by the frothing at the mouth right for not stopping this attempted act of terrorisms by the frothing at the mouth right.

    March 24, 2010 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  17. Helena

    When are the GOP/Republicans going to speak out against this sort of criminal behavior?

    March 24, 2010 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  18. Bubba

    Doug,you can't even spell "headquarters?" What kind of a trog would spell it "headcorders?" Do you think heads are being corded there, or is it just another one of those things too complicated for you to think about? IF you have evidence about the DNC bombing in Colorado, give it to cops; were you there? Do you know this for a fact? You are so full of hot air.

    March 24, 2010 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  19. Anonymous

    Jim:
    'It' has started – soon Limbaugh and Beck will be in federal prison – 'pockets' of southern racist 'baggers' will have been dispatched by the U.S. military – "Faux" will be off the air – the GOP will be finished as a political party – the 'Blue Dog" Dems will split off to form a new 'conservative' party. The new world is dawning....

    . . . you make it sound like a bad thing. Of course, the ideal way is to keep Limbaugh and Beck in our pocket for a while, and slowly have them come around to the liberal side, bringing dissidents with them . . . and there's no need to have the military dispatch anyone. That's what the police are for.

    March 24, 2010 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
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