Indiana Man Charged with Harassment and Intimidation of Congressman
An Indiana man has been charged with harassment and intimidation of Rep. Jim Banks (R-IN) over threatening phone calls he allegedly made to the congressman.
Aaron L. Thompson, 33, had called Banks’s office at least eight times, with the first time on April 6 and the other seven times on April 11, during which he left threatening messages, according to a probable cause filing from June 2. Thompson said in the messages that he owned a gun and told Banks to choose between himself and his daughters, according to the filing, which was obtained by the Indiana Capital Chronicle.
“Here’s the choice,” Thompson allegedly said. “Your daughters grow up without their dad or you grow old without your daughters … boom, boom, you pick …”
As part of his messages, Thompson allegedly said he hoped that Banks would die in a car crash or “(got) his brains blown out.”
Arrest and Charges
U.S. Capitol Police confirmed Thompson’s arrest in a statement to the Washington Examiner, saying it was “another example of how our threat agents are working around the clock to chase down threats in order to protect the members of Congress.”
In the state of Indiana, intimidation is a felony, and harassment is a misdemeanor. Banks was arrested on Friday and is scheduled to have his initial hearing on Tuesday.
Intoxication and Political Views
Thompson reportedly told police in an interview that he was intoxicated and was calling Banks because he disagreed with his political views.
Statement from Congressman Banks
“The safety of my family is my top priority,” said Banks in a statement given to the Washington Examiner. “I’ve been instructed to refer all questions about the ongoing criminal investigation to the Allen County Prosecutor’s Office.”
The Washington Examiner has contacted the Allen County Prosecutor’s Office.
Thompson’s alleged actions are a serious matter and highlight the importance of protecting our elected officials. It is never acceptable to threaten or intimidate someone because of their political views or beliefs. Let’s hope justice is served in this case.
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