April 6th, 2010
03:41 PM ET
4 years ago

Man arrested, accused of death threats against U.S. senator

Police arrested a 64-year-old Washington state resident for allegedly making death threats against Democratic Sen. Patty Murray.
Police arrested a 64-year-old Washington state resident for allegedly making death threats against Democratic Sen. Patty Murray.

(CNN) - Police arrested a 64-year-old Washington state resident for allegedly making death threats against Democratic Sen. Patty Murray of Washington, the Justice Department announced Tuesday.

A department statement said the suspect, identified as Charles Alan Wilson of Selah, Washington, made the threats in phone messages to Murray's office between March 22 and April 4.

Wilson allegedly stated that Murray "had a target on her back" and that he wanted to kill her, according to the statement, which said the threats were in response to congressional passage of the new health care bill.

According to the statement, Wilson allegedly "told undercover FBI agents that he regularly carries a firearm with a concealed weapons permit" and "also stated that he was extremely angry about the passage of the health care reform legislation."

Threatening a federal official is punishable by up to 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine, the statement said.

Threats against U.S. senators and representatives increased as Congress held its final debates and votes on the health care bill, which was unanimously opposed by Republicans. In addition, conservative activists around the country protested the bill.

Most of the reported threats were against Democrats, though there were some against Republicans.


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soundoff (85 Responses)
  1. Doug,lib jersey

    Notice how no one support this crazy.

    Yet, the guy who wanted to kill Cantor had 8 out of 10 ticker posts supporting him, with comment on how Cantor somehow deserved it.

    Oh yeah, there is a quite a difference between left and right, explains why all of the most violent areas of the country are solidly blue lib.

    April 6, 2010 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  2. JT the MO college freshman

    This incivility has to stop from both sides of the isle; it is starting to make me sick to my stomach. We need to debate civily on all issues facing us; I have read history, and I am finding a horrible similarity to what is being said now and what happened during the 1960s. Those who do not know history are doomed to have it rhyme in their face; I am demanding this to stop.

    I know that we seem to be in troubling times right now, but I think that through our will of determination to make the right and hard choice, we can pull out of this mess. If you look at history, we have been in tighter spots than this before; Great Depression and Civil War to name two examples.

    The patterns of your life story, and the life stories of countless other people, are the focus of a term we call developmental psychology, which is the study of people changle physically, mentally, and socially throughout the lifespan. However, the impact of these factors on individual development is greatly influenced by attitudes, perceptions, and personality characteristics. For example, the adjustment for one child to Middle School may be fine, but for another child, it may be really hard. So although we are influenced by the events we can experience, we also shape the meaning and consequences of those events.

    Like every other person's life story, yours has been influenced by factors beyond your control. One such factor is the unique combination of genes you inherited from your biological mother and father. Another is the historical era during which you grew up. Your individual development has also been shaped by the cultural, social, and family contexts within which you were raised.

    My ideas are progressive, I am not denying that fact, but I think that to achieve a healthy country, I think that we need to work together as one people to achieve those. A healthy country is when the government and the citizens debate with eachother in an intelligent, civil tone of discussion to get issues done or slowly taken care of.

    Again,the only functional society is a society where both government and the citizens are involved in civil, intelligent discussion. If we cannot do that, nothing will get done for us and other future generations to see. The future is counting on us to do what is right, true, and hard; great achievements in human history did not come from taking the easy path, they came from taking the hard, bumpy, but necessary track to a successful future. These are only some great historical figures that took the hard but necessary track: George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy, Martin Luther King Jr., and Susan B. Anthony for women's rights of free choice.

    What we can do is work together as one human race to achieve what most say cannot be done; to do so though is going to require for us to make a necessary sacrifice to ensure that our children will see a prosperous future. I still have confidence that we all have the potential to do so.

    What we have written down in our actions today will determine what history's destiny will write down for us in the future; you will never know what your own potential is until you give your own potential a try for the good of mankind.

    Have a good day to you all.

    April 6, 2010 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  3. Sniffit

    "Stop being jerks for a moment and actually LISTEN to what Gov. Palin and the Conservatives have to say, rather than simply shouting them down."

    You mean tlike the GOP and Teatards did at all the August 2009 Dem town hall meetings at which they were attempting to explain the truth about the HCR bill effort? Can the victimhood claims bub. If it looks like a Teatard, acts like a Teatard and quacks threats like a lunatic fringe gun-toting whackjob...then, well, that's what it is. Suck it up and do something about it instead of making excuses, Captain Apologist.

    April 6, 2010 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  4. Ross

    This bill gets passed without a single Republican vote and now the Democrats of America can't understand why the people are mad? The government is stealing from its people and trampling their constitutional rights. Nowhere in the Constitution does it say I HAVE to buy anything, nor do I HAVE to support any sort of business whatsoever (autos, banks, pharmaceuticals, insurance) and yet democrats continue to take what they want when they want with no regard for individual rights. There are going to be thousands more like this man if the government continues to steal in the name of whatever the charity of the day is. This will NEVER be repealed only because it is an entitlement and is the nail in the coffin for our country.

    April 6, 2010 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  5. Mikey

    Hey "blame everyone" – yes reporters heard it and the spitting incident is on video – they just don't play it or discuss it much (or truthfully) on certain media sites, where I suspect you get all of your "news"

    April 6, 2010 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  6. Brink

    Great job FBI. There is no room in a democracy for violent extremists of any ilk. Now go out and catch the others who broke the law with their words and behavior.

    April 6, 2010 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  7. Doug,lib jersey

    Barak Obama is far more resonsible for that poor kid in Chicago getting beat to death by that mob of kids with sticks than Glenn Beck, Rush Limbaugh, or Sarah Palina are responsible for the threats of this crazy.

    Facts, they make libs show their true colors, and are what almost every conserative lives by.

    April 6, 2010 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  8. Jason

    Anyone dare said anything about the Bush regime, they would have been wiretapped and sent down to Gitmo and treated as a traitor. But in Republicant land they are treated as heroes. As those who stand up to the government. Patriots.. Anyone speaks ill of the government or a Republicant regime, your a "traitor" Un-Patriotic.. You can't have it both ways anymore!!

    Hey Republicants. Fear is NOT a platform to run on anymore.. Your fear tactics and & campaigns of fear won't bring the sheep together anymore.. The tea-bag.gers will tear America down.

    April 6, 2010 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  9. Darth Vadik, CA

    As the wise Yoda once said:

    fear leads to anger
    anger leads to hate
    hate leads to suffering

    AKA as the Republican modus operandi...

    The teabag movement is just progressing thru natural crazy conservative stages, until another building in Oklahoma is bombed.

    Terrorists (foreign and domestic) are not born, they are created by fear mongers...

    April 6, 2010 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  10. Mike

    Who do we blame for death threats against Republicans?

    April 6, 2010 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  11. jeff jackson, alabama

    Oh yeah.....but Maddow, Oberman, Matthews,
    and Cafferty are saints .....right ?????
    Let's spread the blame game around evenly
    folks. There is no less hate talk and division
    coming from the liberals than the conservatives.
    Let's just all stop this crap and we will be better off !
    And remember this....all these show hosts are in it
    for THEMSELVES and not for us.

    April 6, 2010 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  12. Sniffit

    "No the taliban is the so-called pro-choice crowd who when a woman chooses to have a child, they berate the woman for not getting an abortion."
    "Stop being jerks for a moment and actually LISTEN to what Gov. Palin and the Conservatives have to say, rather than simply shouting them down."

    Actually, we did...and they were lying (e.g., "death panels")...and when we said "hey, wait a second, you guys are lying," you all started crying and saying that we were trying to shut you up and take away your freedom of speach. Grow up crybaby. Maybe it's YOU and the rest of the conservative lemmings who need to REALLY start listening to Limbaugh, Palin, et al. Turning on the radio or Fox and ucritically nodding your head while getting angry is NOT "listening."

    April 6, 2010 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  13. Bob C

    Blame everyone but the democrats wrote:You people are stupid. You blame all the Republicans and Fox, Hannity and Palin for spreading hate.

    Did you know that half of the Tea Party members are Independents or Democrats???"

    Maybe if you stayed in school long enough to read and learn statistics you might not have made such a fool of yourself.

    Facts are:

    "Gallup has released a survey about the 28 percent of Americans who say they are supporters of the Tea Party movement. Although they skew conservative and Republican, demographically they represent middle America.

    Forty-nine percent of Tea Party supporters self-identify as Republicans (28 percent of all American adults do), 43 percent as Independents, and 8 percent as Democrats. Seventy percent see themselves as conservative–that compares to 40 percent of all American adults."

    So by your logic 92% of Tea Partiers are Republican or Independent.

    Bozo!

    April 6, 2010 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  14. Sniffit

    "No the taliban is the so-called pro-choice crowd who when a woman chooses to have a child, they berate the woman for not getting an abortion."
    "Stop being jerks for a moment and actually LISTEN to what Gov. Palin and the Conservatives have to say, rather than simply shouting them down."

    Actually, we did...and they were lying (e.g., "death panels")...and when we said "hey, wait a second, you guys are lying," you all started crying and saying that we were trying to shut you up and take away your freedom of speach. Grow up crybaby. Maybe it's YOU and the rest of the conservative lemmings who need to REALLY start listening to Limbaugh, Palin, et al. Turning on the radio or Fox and uncritically nodding your head while getting angry is NOT "listening."

    April 6, 2010 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  15. Victim of GOP Taliban

    Memo to all the Taliban idiots like the man arrested: If you live in a Blue State and don't like being the minority...then go move to the Confederate States or Utah. Don't try to think you can intimidate Democrats that have dominating majorities on the Left Coast.

    April 6, 2010 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  16. Bill

    Beck, Limbaugh and Palin incite violence for their own financial gain. When something happens, I hope they are held fully responsible, financially and criminally. They know what they are doing.

    April 6, 2010 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  17. LacrosseMom

    @ Mr. Charles Skinner "repair the damage done over the last 3 years"??? President Obama has been in Office for ONE YEAR.

    America has NOT forgotten what 12 years(1994-2006, Dems won a slight majority in '06) of a Republican controlled Congress (both House & Senate) did to our economy!

    We ALL remember Bush,

    Two wars, Bank Bail Outs, TORTURE, doubling of the National debt, spying on American citizens, secret prisons in foreign countries, etc.

    April 6, 2010 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  18. Kevin St Pete FL

    RNC, Conservative/ Neo Cons, Teabaggers,

    This is your ONLY warning:

    STOP THIS BEFORE SOMEBODY GETS HURT OR KILLED!!!!

    April 6, 2010 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  19. Joan

    What an Idiot !!!!

    The Republicans should be disgusted with themselves as they have actually put fuel to all this hate with their talk of socialism,hate and use of weapons.

    This is not politics it is terrorism !!!!

    April 6, 2010 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  20. Victim of GOP Taliban

    Yes Sarah Palin and her cronies are doing a fine job inciting violence by the toothless, intellectually-challenged mob.

    April 6, 2010 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  21. ROM

    Why don't the idiots listed below run for office if they can change the country. Don't back someone, just run. Then you will see what idiots will back you. Run Baby Run
    April 6th, 2010 4:43 pm ET

    Limbaugh, Palin, Beck, Hannity, Colter, The Tea Baggers are the ones pouring fuel on the fire.......everytime they open their mouths......and this is putting every conservative Republican in the HOT SEAT.
    It is easy to talk the talk but do they walk the walk.

    April 6, 2010 05:03 pm at 5:03 pm |
  22. D.

    We have freedom of speech, we have freedom of disagreeing with government, we have freedom of being against legislation.
    Why these freedoms are connected by some to the nuts who threaten to kill people? Normal people know to disagree without hate and understand differences in policy. Why accuse policy opposition with connection to this nut? Making these connections is nutty as well!

    April 6, 2010 05:03 pm at 5:03 pm |
  23. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    If you think you can operate like the Taliban within our United States you better have enough money to leave this country because the FBI, CIA and all other intelligency agencies know who you are. I personally wouldn't like to be on that list of most wanted while endangering my family, neighbors and community.

    April 6, 2010 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  24. Darth Vadik, CA

    Charles W. Skinner,

    nicely put moron, people who are sending death threats are trying to protect us...

    ...WOW, you must have an IQ of -208...

    ...maybe you just believe that fairies will sprinkle fairy dust in the never never land and Rick Santorum will be the next President.

    What wholes do you freaks crawl out out with these idiotic thoughts?

    April 6, 2010 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  25. Peter

    Im more scared of a right winger doing something crazy these days...whats gotten into these folks??? Fox news owned by a Foreigner ought to be held culpable for Sarah Palins and glenns mad rants they are incited violence and social disorder not civil dissention...i hope independents are paying attention to who the adults are and vote these Republican bums out come November...i like active politics and citizenship but this people are the ones quietly trying to disstabilize America! We wont let you!!!

    April 6, 2010 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
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