DALLAS (CN) – A North Texas man was charged Thursday with threatening to shoot and kill House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other Democrats he said belonged to a “satanic cult.”
Gavin Wesley Blake Perry, 27, of Wichita Falls, made his initial appearance before U.S. Magistrate Judge Hal Ray. He is accused of transmitting a threatening communication in interstate commerce.
The criminal complaint states a concerned citizen informed local police that Perry posted threats on Facebook.
“If youre a dem or apart of the establishment in the democrats side I view you as a criminal and a terrorist and I advise everyone to Go SOS [shoot on sight] and use live rounds,” Perry posted March 23, according to authorities. “This is not gonna change until we attact NSA the DOJ the FBI and Any other agencies who want to get involved. Shoot to kill. This is a revolution.”
He accused Pelosi and those working closely with her as being part of a “satanic cult.”
“Dems of the establishment will be removed at any cost necessary and yes that means by death,” he allegedly posted.
Pelosi has faced intense criticism from political conservatives for her role in impeaching President Donald Trump last year. She has faced additional criticism this week in delaying the Senate’s passage of a massive $2 trillion economic stimulus bill to fight the Covid-19 pandemic.
Democrats demanded more protections for workers and the unemployed, emergency funding for hospitals and more independent oversight of billions of dollars in grants and loans to businesses.
The bill was unanimously approved Wednesday by the Senate after several days of around-the-clock negotiations. The House of Representatives is scheduled to vote on the bill Friday morning.
Prosecutors say that when Perry was confronted by police during his arrest, he allegedly admitted the online account that made those posts belonged to him and that he wanted to warn Americans of the “tyrannical” government.
“He then stated that the officers were violating his First Amendment right to free speech, a violation he felt was punishable by death,” prosecutors said in a written statement. “He also stated he intended to bond out of jail and planned to refuse to comply with any order to come to court. He said he does not recognize the authority of the federal government.”
Erin Nealy Cox, U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Texas, said Americans “are entitled to voice their opinions – but we will not allow them to threaten our officials’ physical safety.” She said the threats are “wholly inexcusable” and that she looks forward to prosecuting Perry.
He faces up to five years in federal prison if convicted. Perry remains in federal custody as he has been deemed a serious flight risk, according to a motion for pretrial detention.