Two men face criminal charges for allegedly threatening Michigan public officials, including a US senator and congresswoman, regarding the results of the 2020 election, according to a news release from Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel.
Daniel Thompson of Michigan is charged with three counts of malicious use of service provided by a telecommunication service provider, according to the charging documents provided by Nessel’s office. Thompson allegedly left threatening messages for Michigan Democratic Sen. Debbie Stabenow, made vulgar and threatening remarks during a phone conversation with a staffer in Michigan Democratic Rep. Elissa Slotkin’s office, and made another threatening call to Slotkin.
According to the charges announced Tuesday, Thompson allegedly left a voicemail for Stabenow stating that he was upset over the November election results, that he was a member of a Michigan extremist group and that, if the election results were not changed, there would be violence. In the conversation with a staffer in Slotkin’s office, Thompson said that people would die and made violent remarks in a conversation lasting over an hour, per Nessel’s office.
A second man, Clinton Stewart of Georgia, was charged on Tuesday with one count of malicious use of service provided by a telecommunications service provider. Stewart allegedly left a threatening voicemail in September for Michigan Court of Claims Judge Cynthia Stephens accusing “activist judges” of issuing rulings that helped President Joe Biden win the election due to mail-in ballots.
CNN has left messages for Thompson and Stewart seeking comment.
“It is unacceptable and illegal to intimidate or threaten public officials,” Nessel said in the news release. “To those who think they can do so by hiding behind a keyboard or phone, we will find you and we will prosecute you, to the fullest extent of the law. No elected official should have to choose between doing their job and staying safe.”
Female Michigan Democratic officials have faced significant threats in recent months. In October, 14 people were charged in an alleged domestic terrorism plot to kidnap Michigan Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, federal and state officials announced at the time.
The alleged scheme included plans to overthrow several state governments that the suspects “believe are violating the US Constitution,” including the government of Michigan and Whitmer, according to a federal criminal complaint. Two of those charged in the alleged domestic terrorism plot to kidnap Whitmer are former Marines, the Corps said at the time.
Former President Donald Trump repeatedly attacked Whitmer before and after the news of the plot, and Whitmer wrote in The Atlantic at the time that every time he did so, threats surged. During a rally in Michigan in late October, Trump lambasted Whitmer, at one point taking credit for the FBI thwarting a plot to kidnap her and then immediately downplaying the actual threat that had been posed to her.
Additionally, in December, “credible threats of violence” prompted Michigan authorities to close the state Capitol to the public and shutter House and Senate offices, a spokeswoman said, on the day the Electoral College was slated to formally declare Biden the President-elect.