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

FBI: Man arrested for threatening House speaker


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.

Filed under: Nancy Pelosi • Popular Posts
soundoff (201 Responses)
  1. LacrosseMom(the real one)

    Another arrest in what the GOPers called "made-up-attacks"!

    Careful of the hate rhetoric on the right, it may come back to bite you!

    April 7, 2010 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  2. Stacie

    Thank you, FBI agents. You are fine American Patriots!

    April 7, 2010 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  3. Duck Fallas

    I know 10,000 super patriots in Minnesota that think this is GREAT news.

    April 7, 2010 05:04 pm at 5:04 pm |
  4. Marge

    Well with Palin, Bachman , Beck and Fox News putting a TARGET on her and telling people to blow her up what do you expect. I thought that since these people suggested it, this guy made the threat it would all be a conspiracy and the S.O.B's instead of spouting hate would be locked in JAIL WHERE THEY BELONG.


    I bet if people had threatened the stealer of the presidency bush they would still be in jail.

    April 7, 2010 05:04 pm at 5:04 pm |
  5. Blue

    The right has gone nuts.

    April 7, 2010 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  6. Captain

    Unfortunately with the arrogant and obnoxious behavior of our public officials I think this will become more prevalent. Hopefully no nut job from the left or right will act on their threats.

    April 7, 2010 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  7. Keith Hall

    This is a sad commentary on the Repulican party's tactics that encourge such behavior by insighting hatred through thier actions. Has everyone forgotton about the protesters out front of the capital building spewing profanity and rasist comments at the Democratic party members at the height of the health care debate. Freeze frame, the picture of some Republican members hanging out on the balcony holding up inflamatory signs..............

    April 7, 2010 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  8. Ken in Pisgah Forest

    Law enforcement is doing a good job of getting these wackos off the streets. They should be commended.

    Unfortunately, there are a lot more wackos out there. It's too bad they hate democracy so much that when they are on the losing side they have to resort to violence and threats.

    April 7, 2010 05:10 pm at 5:10 pm |
  9. Marie MD

    Good start rounding them up. Fifteen years in jail right? Why don't they go after the militia vandebough in AL? Just think, if he goes to jail (where he belongs) then instead of disability checks from the government he doesn't want anything to do with he will get three free meals a day and a roof over his head.
    Poetic justice.

    April 7, 2010 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |
  10. Peter

    im starting to fear the RIGHT more any other threats lately they are seriously losing it!!! They are not patriots!!! Patriots dont attempt to disrupt and dismantle their own Govt or Country....there are always other legal and proper ways to register discontent! SHAME ON REPUBLICANS!!!

    April 7, 2010 05:20 pm at 5:20 pm |
  11. Jimmy

    Anarchy is on the rise in America ... fueled by partisan hateful rhetoric. Let's get civil in America before civil war erupts. The "cultural wars" have been bad enough.

    April 7, 2010 05:23 pm at 5:23 pm |
  12. CBR

    See what hatred can cause. If you saw or read Republican material about Nancy Pelosi you would see where this man got his motivation.

    Maybe it i time that Republican politicians put an end to all of this hateful rhetoric.

    April 7, 2010 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  13. Sarah the baby seal basher

    Well the guy or gal could be TCM.I dont see him on here today,spewing his Rush Limbaugh talking points and hate speech.

    April 7, 2010 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  14. RB

    Pelosi is much more of a threat to America than anyone is a threat to her.

    April 7, 2010 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  15. gerrr

    Frankly, no one really likes Nancy Pelosi, but you shouldn't threaten or hurt her....vote her out....vote all the Dems out and she'll lose the speaker position. Democracy is about voting not violence.

    April 7, 2010 05:31 pm at 5:31 pm |
  16. Four and The Door

    It's pathetic the way some posters are trying to tie this guy to the Republican party. Okay, so Pelosi is such a strictly partisan politician that it has to be a Republican?!?! I guess that's your logic. My guess is that some liberal judge let this wacko on the street when he should have been put away. Stay tuned.

    April 7, 2010 05:31 pm at 5:31 pm |
  17. shamgar50

    Teabaggers out of control!

    April 7, 2010 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  18. Luke Brown

    This is what a country gets when it combines media+hate+ignorance.

    Thank you FOX "News", Sarah Palin, Glenn Beck, and Rush Bimball for turning our great country into an ill-informed, hate machine.

    April 7, 2010 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  19. Rack

    Please... Liberals publicly threatened Bush for years. It was an every day occurrence and they were able to protect him so Pelosi will be safe. The hypocrisy of this whole thing is if there were threats against Obama like there was with Bush there would be blood in the streets.

    April 7, 2010 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  20. Greg, San Francisco, CA

    Naturally teh Republicans/Fox News/Sarah Palin/TeaBagger/Glenn Beck crowd will disavow that they have been inciting violence, right?

    April 7, 2010 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  21. Ridgeway

    What did he threaten her with? A brain transplant?

    April 7, 2010 05:48 pm at 5:48 pm |
  22. Senses

    You go FBI ! get all these 'hatriots' charged and indicted !!
    don't care if they come from the right or the left.. wrong is wrong end of story !

    April 7, 2010 05:55 pm at 5:55 pm |
  23. LacrosseMom(the real one)

    Can't believe that the GOPers are still denying that IT IS the Conservatives who made threats after the Healthcare Bill passed!

    And WHAT threats exactly did Bush receive? WHO was arrested?

    April 7, 2010 06:02 pm at 6:02 pm |
  24. A.B.

    This man is stupid and should be prosecuted and imprisoned for threatening any federal official.

    April 7, 2010 06:03 pm at 6:03 pm |
  25. Pam Eugene,OR

    I am a Democrat and I don't like Nancy Pelosi or what she stands for. She is way too far left but that does not make it alright to threaten her life.
    Peoplw need to get the rhetoric under control and fight back with their votes. All the hate and uglyness destorts any reasonable message. You can not hear it thru the over the top anger.

    April 7, 2010 06:08 pm at 6:08 pm |
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