Massachusetts man charged with threatening president on FBI website

Reuters News
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Posted: Jul 06, 2015 5:47 PM

NEW YORK (Reuters) - A Massachusetts man has been charged with threatening President Barack Obama in a message posted to the FBI’s website, federal prosecutors said on Monday.

    Andrew J. O’Keefe, 28, who is in custody, faces up to five years in prison, three years of supervision after release and a $250,000 fine for the posting, U.S. Attorney Carmen Ortiz said in a statement.

    O’Keefe, who is from Mansfield, a town about 35 miles (56 km) from Boston, is accused of posting a single threatening message to the FBI’s Internet crime tip submission page on May 13, according to a criminal complaint unsealed on Monday.

    “I’m planning to kill President Barack Obama, and I’ve got a really good plan. Have the Secret Service give me a visit. I could use some company,” O’Keefe is accused of writing.

    An attorney for O’Keefe could not immediately be reached.

    O’Keefe was identified as the author because he signed the posting using his Social Security number, according to the complaint.

    After receiving his message, U.S. Secret Service agents investigated O’Keefe’s background and found he had been recently arrested and charged with multiple counts of assault with a dangerous weapon.

    On May 15, agents arrived at O’Keefe’s apartment and tried to interview him. He refused to open his door or answer phone calls, according to the complaint. Eventually, he co-operated with law enforcement officers and was arrested.

    Officials searched O’Keefe’s apartment and vehicle and recovered a cache of weapons including swords, knives, hatchets, spears and an air rifle, according to the complaint.

    He is scheduled for a court appearance on July 28.

(Editing by Laila Kearney and Eric Walsh)