BALTIMORE (WJZ) — A federal judge on Tuesday sentenced a Frederick man for making threats against President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris in the waning weeks of the 2020 presidential campaign.
U.S. District Judge Ellen L. Hollander sentenced James Dale Reed, 42, to seven months in federal prison and four months of home detention, followed by three years of supervised release. Hollander gave Reed credit for time served since he was taken into federal custody in February.READ MORE: Maryland Man Pleads Guilty For Threatening President Joe Biden, VP Kamala Harris And Their Supporters During 2020 Presidential Campaign
“Making threats against candidates and fellow citizens for their political beliefs undermines our democracy and will not be tolerated,” Acting U.S. Attorney Jonathan F. Lenzner said in a statement. “This sentence reflects our commitment to holding accountable anyone who seeks to intimidate, harass or dissuade Americans from exercising their right to vote and to peacefully support the candidate of their choice.”
Investigators said that Reed admitted to leaving a letter threatening Biden and Harris on the doorstep of a Frederick resident. The letter, discovered on Oct. 4, 2020, also threatened supporters of the Democratic ticket.READ MORE: James Dale Reed Found Guilty Of Voter Intimidation After Leaving Letter Threatening President Biden, VP Harris In Maryland Mailbox
“We have a list of homes and addresses by your election signs,” the letter read. “We are the ones with those scary guns.”
Investigators learned that Reed had multiple firearms registered to him. On Oct. 15, investigators went to Reed’s home to ask for palm prints and a handwriting sample. Reed complied and, after being informed of his Miranda rights, spoke freely to investigators. He said he delivered the letter to the first house he saw that had multiple Democratic campaign signs because he was upset over political issues.
Afterward, police obtained an emergency order under Maryland’s “red flag” law, allowing them to seize his firearms based on his threats of mass violence. Investigators obtained a search warrant for his home, where they discovered a room of military paraphernalia, uniforms, ammunition and weapons, including two grenades. Reed forfeited the weapons and ammunition under the terms of his plea deal.MORE NEWS: Caught On Camera: Maryland Man Allegedly Wrote Letter Threatening Joe Biden, Kamala Harris