(CNSNews.com) – Cambridge, Mass., resident Brandon Ziobrowski was arrested in New York on Aug. 9 for tweeting threatening messages, including ones directed at ICE agents and Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz).
According to an indictment against Ziobrowski filed at the U.S. District Court in Boston and unsealed on Aug. 9, Ziobrowski threatened the life of Senator McCain, tweeting several times that he wanted to “slit” McCain’s throat.
His threatening messages also targeted the police. On or around Feb. 24 of this year, Ziobrowski tweeted, “Guns should only be legal for shooting the police like the second amendment intended.”
Two weeks later, using a different method of online communication, Ziobrowski stated, “F*** this police state shooting a cop should get you a medal.” (Asterix added.)
Ziobrowski also targeted Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents. On or around March 1, 2018, he messaged, “Thank you ICE for putting your lives on the line and hopefully dying I guess so there’s less of you?”
On or around July 2, 2018, he tweeted, “I am broke but I will scrounge and literally give $500 to anyone who kills an ice agent. @me seriously who else can pledge get it on this let’s make this work.”
The indictment further says, “The Grand Jury charges that … Brandon James Ziobrowski, did knowingly transmit in interstate and foreign commerce through Twitter, an online news and social networking service available on the Internet, a communication containing a threat to injure the person of another, to wit: ‘an ice agent,’ and did so intending that his message communicate a threat and knowing that it would be interpreted as a threat.”
Fox10 TV reported that U.S. Attorney Andrew Lelling commented on the case, stating, "The agents and officers out there enforcing federal laws are doing their job, plain and simple. There is a difference between public debate and putting others in fear of their lives."
“Threats to law enforcement, no matter how they are communicated, are never taken lightly. The fact that this death threat was communicated over social media does not in any way diminish the seriousness of the threat, nor the danger posed by the individual who made it,” said Homeland Security Investigations Special Agent Peter C. Fitzhugh. “Not only do these threats not intimidate the men and women of the agency, they only serve to strengthen our determination in carrying out the mission that we have been solemnly sworn to uphold."
According to Fox News, FBI Special Agent in Charge Harold Shaw said that Ziobrowski has in the past used “extreme anti-U.S. rhetoric” and has expressed support for “Communist” and “Socialist” ideological beliefs. According to a “Joint Motion to Continue Arraignment,” Ziobrowski will be arraigned on Sept. 6.
The case will be prosecuted by the Office of U.S. Attorney for Massachusetts Andrew E. Lelling, reported ICE.