Beverly man who sent white-powder letters to Trump family to serve probation

“The letter promised that if Trump did not drop out of the race, the next letter would not be a fake," officials said.

President Donald Trump and family when he was sworn in in 2017.
–Patrick Semansky / AP, File

A man who pleaded guilty to sending letters containing white powder to President Donald Trump’s family will serve five years of probation, according to federal officials.

Daniel Frisiello, 25, of Beverly, will spend one year of his sentence in in-home detention, will have his location monitored, and must pay restitution. While on probation, he can’t go on the internet, mail letters, or have access to or own a computer, officials said. He also can’t contact the victims.

While prosecutors had sought prison time for Frisiello, the judge decided against it since the 25-year old is developmentally disabled and may not respond well to incarceration, according to the Associated Press:

“Do not underestimate how serious I am treating your crimes,” Judge Nathaniel Gorton said to Frisiello as the dozens of his family members, friends and supporters who had packed the court proceeding hugged, cried and sighed in relief.


In court, Frisiello described how the last year has been “hell” for his family, the AP reported. Assistant U.S. Attorney Scott Garland wanted Frisiello to serve three years in prison. He said Frisiello’s crimes were well thought out and he mailed the letters from different places in an attempt to evade detection.

“This was not an impulsive thing,” he said, according to the news service. “At every step, there was a chance for deliberation.”

Daniel Frisiello.

Frisiello has been confined at home since his arrest on March 1 of last year. In October 2018, he pleaded guilty to 13 counts of mailing a threat to injure someone and six counts of false information and hoaxes, according to officials. 

Frisiello sent a letter to the Trump family during the 2016 presidential campaign, and it “caused a significant hazardous material response” in New York City, officials said.

“The letter promised that if Trump did not drop out of the race, the next letter would not be a fake,” according to the U.S. Attorney’s office.

Frisiello also sent other letters to various other people, including another to the Trump family in 2018 as well as one threatening to shoot the assistant district attorney in the Michelle Carter case.


Law enforcement found Frisiello the perpetrator after he sent a “glitter bomb” in 2018, officials said.

“Law enforcement traced the glitter bomb to Frisiello through financial records,” federal officials said. “In addition, trash recovered from Frisiello’s residence contained remnants of the cut-out computer-printed messages that Frisiello sent to some victims.”