In a case that highlights the serious consequences of online threats, a Texas man has been sentenced to 3 ½ years in prison for threatening a county attorney and an elections official. Frederick Francis Goltz used social media platforms to advocate for violence against these individuals and their children, posting personal information and making alarming statements. The U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas emphasized the importance of election workers and county attorneys in upholding democracy, stating that threats against them are unconscionable. The FBI’s investigation into Goltz’s online activity revealed a history of threatening statements against various targets. The sentencing hearing included testimonies from the targeted individuals, who expressed the impact of such threats on election workers and the community as a whole. This case serves as a reminder of the need to protect those who serve in law enforcement and uphold the integrity of our democratic processes.
Texas Man Sentenced to 3 ½ Years in Prison for Threatening Elections Official and County Attorney
In a recent case, a Texas man named Frederick Francis Goltz was sentenced to 3 ½ years in federal prison for threatening an elections official and a county attorney. The threats were made on far-right-wing social media platforms, where Goltz posted personal information of a lawyer and advocated for violence against Maricopa County officials and their children. This article will provide background information on the case, emphasize the importance of election workers, and include statements from U.S. Attorney Leigha Simonton and FBI Special Agent in Charge Chad Yarbrough.
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Overview of the Case
Frederick Francis Goltz, a 52-year-old Texas man, pleaded guilty to interstate threatening communications in April. He was sentenced by U.S. District Judge James Wesley Hendrix to 3 ½ years in federal prison, followed by three years of supervised release. Goltz targeted individuals in Arizona, including a lawyer from the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office and a Maricopa County elections official. He posted their personal information on social media and advocated for violence against them and their children.
Importance of Election Workers
Election workers play a crucial role in the democratic process, impartially assisting voters of all political persuasions. They set aside their personal political leanings to ensure that individuals have equal access to voting and can exercise their right to cast their ballots. County attorneys also have a vital role in responding to legal challenges in court. Threats against election workers and county attorneys are unacceptable, as they undermine the functioning of American democracy.
Statement from U.S. Attorney Leigha Simonton
U.S. Attorney Leigha Simonton condemns threats against election workers and county attorneys as unconscionable. She emphasizes that these individuals perform sacred duties to the body politic, and advocating violence against them and their children is unacceptable. The Justice Department is committed to protecting members of law enforcement and election officials from such threats.
Statement from FBI Special Agent in Charge Chad Yarbrough
FBI Special Agent in Charge Chad Yarbrough acknowledges the importance of dedicated workers and public servants who ensure equal access and unencumbered participation in the democratic process. He emphasizes that threats of violence have no place in society, and the FBI will continue to protect the American people and seek justice for victims.
Details of the Threats
Frederick Francis Goltz targeted several individuals in Arizona on far-right-wing social media platforms, including a Maricopa County Attorney’s Office lawyer and a Maricopa County elections official. He posted the lawyer’s personal information, including their name, home address, and telephone number, along with a comment insinuating harm to their children. Goltz also advocated for violence against other Maricopa County officials and their children.
Investigation and History of Threats
An FBI investigation into Goltz’s social media activity revealed a long history of threatening statements. He advocated for a mass shooting of poll workers and election officials, believing certain precincts had “suspect” results. Goltz expressed a willingness to take lives to protect against what he deemed a “tyrannical government.” He emphasized that children were not off-limits, as targeting them sends a message and makes people pay the price for the “sins of the father.”
The information for this article was derived from a press release by the U.S. Department of Justice, specifically from U.S. Attorney Leigha Simonton and FBI Special Agent in Charge Chad Yarbrough. The investigation was conducted by the FBI’s Dallas Field Office – Lubbock Resident Agency, and the case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jeffrey Haag, with assistance from National Security Division Trial Attorney Michael Dittoe and Criminal Division Attorney Robert Heberle.
In conclusion, the case of Frederick Francis Goltz highlights the seriousness of threats against election workers and county attorneys. Such threats undermine the democratic process and instill fear in the community. The Department of Justice and the FBI are committed to protecting individuals who serve the public and ensuring the safety of the American people.