Federal prosecutors charged an Arizona man in October over alleged threats to murder House Intelligence Committee Chair Adam Schiff (D-CA), a court document filed last week reveals.
The document, first spotted by the eagle-eyed Nick Martin of The Informant, stems from the prosecution of Jan Peter Meister.
Arizona federal prosecutors charged Meister, a convicted sex offender, in October with making threats through interstate commerce and unlawful possession of firearms.
The indictment recorded Meister as leaving a phone call with the office of a congressman only identified by the initials “A.S.,” allegedly saying, among other things, “I’m gonna fucking blow your brains out you fucking piece of shit mother fucker.”
But it wasn’t until a Jan. 28 court filing from Meister’s defense attorney that the congressman’s identity was confirmed: Adam Schiff.
The document cites a summary of an interview that FBI agents conducted with Meister before his October arrest.
“Agents explained that the call was to Congressman Adam Schiff,” the filing reads. “Meister responded that he watches Fox News and likely was upset at something that he saw on the news. He stated that he strongly dislikes the Democrats, and feels they are to blame for the country’s political issues.”
Meister allegedly made the call on Oct. 1, as Schiff led the House Intelligence Committee in its impeachment inquiry into President Trump’s Ukraine scheme. The Arizona convict wasn’t arrested, however, until Oct. 25, after FBI agents had interviewed Meister at his property.
FBI agents allegedly found a trove of weapons at Meister’s Arizona home. As a convicted felon, Meister would be prohibited from owning firearms.
Upon Meister’s arrest, prosecutors wrote, he exclaimed: “‘Fuck A.S.’ (the defendant stated the alleged victim’s full name).”
Meister is pleading not guilty in the case. His trial is currently scheduled for March.
His defense attorneys dispute “whether [Meister]’s words reflected a serious expression of intent to inflict bodily harm upon the congressman,” and argued in the Tuesday filing that jurors were at risk of being prejudiced because the charges involve threats “against a political figure who figures very prominently in the ongoing impeachment of President Trump.”
Read the filing here:
- Contributions allow us to hire more journalists
- Contributions allow us to provide free memberships to those who cannot afford them
- Contributions support independent, non-corporate journalism