Man Sentenced To Two Years For Threatening GOP Rep Over Health Care

September 17, 2010 4:00 a.m.

A 66-year-old man who threatened Rep. Ginny Brown-Waite (R-FL) over the health care reform bill has been sentenced to 27 months in prison.

Erik Lawrence Pidrman admitted to calling Brown-Waite’s office in the early morning on March 25 and leaving a message in which he said, “Just wanna let you know I have 27 people that are going to make sure that this b**** does not live to see her next term.” But he says he was drinking heavily and blacked out, so he does not remember making the call.The threat was one of several made in the heat of the health care reform debate. When he was arrested, Pidrman had seen reports of threats against Democrats. He said he was probably thinking, “Let me scare one of those righties.”

The judge gave Pidrman twice the sentence recommended by prosecutors in the plea deal, Tampa Bay Online reports. After he is released, he faces three years of probation.

“These threats are disturbing, and they are calculated to interfere with the operation of the community,” he said. “It is not an inconsequential matter to interfere with a congressional representative’s right to cast their vote freely.”

“I’m terribly sorry that it ever happened,” Pidrman said before his sentencing. “I very often watch the recycled news shows on MSNBC.”

“He gets wrapped up in the news,” his lawyer said. “He got wrapped up in the health care decision.”

The lawyer asked the judge not to send Pidrman to prison, noting that he has a series of health problems and is alone in the world except for his 11-year-old dog and a neighbor.

(H/T The Hill)

Masthead Masthead
Editor & Publisher:
Executive Editor:
Managing Editor:
Senior Editor:
Special Projects Editor:
Investigations Desk:
Senior Newswriters:
Editor at Large:
General Manager & General Counsel:
Executive Publisher:
Head of Product:
Director of Technology:
Publishing Associate:
Front-End Developer:
Senior Designer: