April 7th, 2010
08:09 PM ET
4 years ago

FBI: Man arrested for threatening House speaker

ALT TEXT

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was a leading figure in Democratic efforts to win congressional approval of a new health care bill. (Photo Credit: Getty Images/File)

(CNN) - (CNN) - A 48-year-old man was arrested Wednesday for allegedly threatening House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, the FBI announced.

The arrest occurred in San Francisco, California, where Pelosi's home district is located, according to FBI spokesman Joseph Schadler. He identified the suspect as Gregory L. Giusti, but no further details were immediately available.

FBI spokeswoman Patti Hansen said charges against the suspect would be revealed at a court hearing Thursday. She declined to provide any further details of the case.

Pelosi is the top Democrat in the U.S. House and was a leading figure in efforts to win congressional approval of sweeping health care legislation.

A statement from Pelosi's office said the arrest occurred "after an investigation into threats against" the speaker. It thanked law enforcement officials and said Pelosi would have no further comment at this time.

Threats against U.S. senators and representatives increased as Congress completed work last month 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.

On Tuesday, the Justice Department announced the arrest of a 64-year-old Washington state resident for allegedly issuing death threats against Democratic Sen. Patty Murray of Washington, who supported the health care bill.

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.

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

Updated: 8:09 p.m.


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soundoff (201 Responses)
  1. willard bullock

    I am belived that repbluic are stronges that democart I ask people why man musilims was shooting killed of 13 people at army fort hood in texas that I said shut up other people

    April 7, 2010 06:12 pm at 6:12 pm |
  2. frank

    There's a line you don't cross. He crossed the line, nice job by the Feds.

    April 7, 2010 06:14 pm at 6:14 pm |
  3. Joe

    When are the "Family Values" leaders of the Republican party going to step forward and denounce the climate of hate that their stooges in the wingnut media have created? Doe someone literally have to get killed first?

    April 7, 2010 06:37 pm at 6:37 pm |
  4. No more Dumbocrats after 2010

    This woman has done real damage to this country and should be indicted for treason.

    April 7, 2010 06:45 pm at 6:45 pm |
  5. Jim

    We can't allow people to threaten violence to our elected officials no matter what their plitical stripe. It would really help if the right wing demonizing their political opponents and inciting people against them.

    April 7, 2010 06:47 pm at 6:47 pm |
  6. Jim

    We can't allow people to threaten violence to our elected officials no matter what their plitical stripe. It would really help if the right wing would quit demonizing their political opponents and inciting people against them.

    April 7, 2010 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
  7. AA

    Conservatives threatening people that don't agree with them, what a surprise...

    April 7, 2010 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
  8. Ken in NC

    At the rate Republicans are making threats against members of Congress, they will all be in jail by election time. They they will complain that they were robbed of their right to vote.

    April 7, 2010 06:58 pm at 6:58 pm |
  9. AA

    LOL yeah he threaten her with a Sarah Palin brain transplant...

    April 7, 2010 06:59 pm at 6:59 pm |
  10. ran

    We may be in for much worse when either a true Democrat or Independent takes more seats after the 2010 elections.

    Who in their right mind would vote for a fear/hate/obstructionist/purity Republican. Other than a fear/hate/obstructionist/purity Republican that is. I think no one.

    The days of fear/hate/obstructionism and mostly trying to make this country a one size fit all purity country are over.

    April 7, 2010 06:59 pm at 6:59 pm |
  11. John

    They republicans used to love the Patriot Act now, let's use it to ferret out those hate mongers. I think the guy they arrested should be shipped to GITMO to see who else is involved.

    What goes around, comes around.

    April 7, 2010 07:00 pm at 7:00 pm |
  12. Texas Granny

    What the duece is wrong with people these days???
    You can disagree all you want, but when you start making threats of violence, then you need your darn head examined... preferably while locked up in a padded cell.
    PEOPLE– the hate & devisiveness has to stop.
    I will not watch that hate filled Fox news anymore because they are so biased and just about to the point of being crazies anymore. I put a lot of the blame for all the hate speech in our country these days squarely on their shoulders. Their "fair & balanced" claim is 100% pure bull.

    April 7, 2010 07:01 pm at 7:01 pm |
  13. MikeH

    Keep posting your hate Ridgeway, they're tracking you down.

    April 7, 2010 07:01 pm at 7:01 pm |
  14. MikeH

    I think a use has finally been found for those FEMA camps in the Mojave desert.

    April 7, 2010 07:04 pm at 7:04 pm |
  15. John

    All those rightwingnuts out there better remember that Alberto is no longer the Attorney General and we will now prosecute Treason against the State.

    April 7, 2010 07:06 pm at 7:06 pm |
  16. rositaCA

    Lets thank the Republicans for this behavior! they are the ones that spread hate, anger, bitterness throughout the entire country

    April 7, 2010 07:10 pm at 7:10 pm |
  17. Mike

    Is everyone sure he was a Republican? Many people on the left were against health care, so blaming Rush, Beck, Obama, Dodd or Frank is a bit premature. This article is clearly swayed against conservatives, and CNN should ashamed.

    April 7, 2010 07:12 pm at 7:12 pm |
  18. RCasson

    Another right wing loon. They need to just lock the whole tea party up!

    April 7, 2010 07:20 pm at 7:20 pm |
  19. willard bullock

    I know that nancy are stupaid about health care bills but I am belived that people are keep voted playing games
    That is true

    April 7, 2010 07:26 pm at 7:26 pm |
  20. Greg Hodges

    I am both shocked and sad that our neighbours to the south seem to be tearing their (once great) country apart at the seams these days. The anger, PARANOID delusions, and (yes) hate is the sure signs of a sick society rapidly in decline. It really seems to me that there are elements in the U.S.

    April 7, 2010 07:26 pm at 7:26 pm |
  21. Smith

    Before we say the right has gone nuts lets not forget about the wackos on the left....the are on both sides. Remember the wacko environmenalists who burned down entire developments a few years ago? Eco terrorists?

    April 7, 2010 07:26 pm at 7:26 pm |
  22. Bryan Hupperts

    No one should threaten the life of a public official. That said, when will the FBI arrest Pelosi and her goons for threatening the prosperity and future of the USA? My God, has anyone but me read that horrible bill?

    On March 23, 1933, Hitler signed the Enabeling Act which gave him the right to rule by decree and literally granted him the power of life and death over the people of Germany. He signed it into law with 22 black pens.

    Curiously, 77 years later on March 23, Obamacare was signed into law giving medical life and death control over the people of the USA to Obama. It also created a civilian army at the beck and call of the President. Want a loan to go to college? It has to be a college Obama approves of. Even more curious, Obama signed his Enabeling Act with 22 black pens.

    Wake up, America. This guy is evil.

    April 7, 2010 07:26 pm at 7:26 pm |
  23. RD

    Where in the story does it say this man was a Republican or part of the Tea party?

    April 7, 2010 07:29 pm at 7:29 pm |
  24. David in San Diego

    In time the bomb-throwing Republican'ts like Boehner, Palin, Bachmann, et al. will be held accountable–by voters, by a court of law, by the media, or by someone who takes the law into his own hands. They incite violence as a political tactic without considering the consequences. Ironic that these 2nd-amendment-purists may find that principle their undoing!

    April 7, 2010 07:32 pm at 7:32 pm |
  25. Jim in San Mateo

    Are these people who threaten our country's leaders so easily, the same ones that Republicans want elected?

    April 7, 2010 07:33 pm at 7:33 pm |
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