Passaic County Man Charged with Making Threatening Phone Calls to Federal and State Officials
|U.S. Attorney’s Office December 20, 2012|
NEWARK—A Passaic County, New Jersey man will make his initial court appearance today on charges he made numerous threatening telephone calls to public officials, including Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal and the office of U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.).
Ronnie D. McMillian, 27, of Hawthorne, New Jersey, was arrested yesterday and charged by complaint with two counts of transmitting threats to injure another through interstate commerce. McMillian is scheduled to make his initial court appearance this afternoon before U.S. Magistrate Judge Cathy L. Waldor in Newark.
According to the complaint:
An investigation conducted by the Threat Assessment Section of the U.S. Capitol Police determined McMillian has frequently made harassing, vulgar, and, on occasion, threatening phone calls to various members of Congress, state government officials, and other public officials and their respective staffs.
McMillian allegedly regularly calls the offices of the targeted public official and screams at the person who answers the call or the voicemail system, using vulgar language to attack the targeted public official’s positions on gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender rights. McMillian threatens that he or others will harm the targeted public official. In July 2012, the U.S. Capitol Police spoke to McMillian about his harassing and threatening communications and warned him that he could be arrested and prosecuted if he continued to make such calls. McMillian continued to make threatening telephone calls to state and federal officials, two instances of which are detailed in the complaint.
On September 29, 2012, McMillian called and left a voicemail with Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal’s Office of Constituent Affairs at the Louisiana State Capital in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. McMillian made numerous vulgar and harassing statements relating to his interpretation of Gov. Jindal’s stance on gay rights. Among other things, McMillian said, “And you better keep in your f—ing little head, you little maggot—you better keep in your f—ing head that gay people have Second Amendment rights, too, you little [unintelligible]. So you better back the f— off or [begins yelling] every single one of you white [Re]publican parasites are going to get a bullet in your f—ing head. You are going to hang for treason, you disgusting maggot.”
On December 17, 2012, McMillian called U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann’s district office in Waite Park, Minnesota, three times and made several violent and threatening statements. A constituent services officer in Congresswoman Bachmann’s office answered all three calls. During each call, the constituent services officer asked McMillian to clean up his language and, when he did not, the constituent services officer terminated the call. McMillian called back several times using increasingly threatening and violent language, including stating that “Now I am going to break your f—ing face.”
If convicted, he faces a maximum potential penalty of five years in prison per count and a fine of up to $250,000.
U.S. Attorney Fishman credited U.S. Capitol Police Supervisory Special Agent Jason Bel; and special agents of the FBI, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Michael B. Ward, for the investigation leading to the arrest.
The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Nicholas P. Grippo and Deputy Chief Matthew E. Beck of the U.S. Attorney’s Office General Crimes Unit in Newark.
The charge and allegations in the complaint are merely accusations, and the defendant is considered innocent unless and until proven guilty.