Crime

Pennsylvania man charged with threatening Rep. Katherine Clark, Sen. Richard Burr

Harry Miller, 62, allegedly said he was willing to kill four or five Democrats, including Clark.

Alex Wong
Representative Katherine Clark.

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A Pennsylvania man has been indicted by a federal grand jury in Pittsburgh on charges that he threatened two members of Congress: Representative Katherine Clark of Melrose and North Carolina Senator Richard Burr, federal prosecutors said .

Harry Miller, 62, of Ross Township, Pa., allegedly called Clark’s Malden office in August 2019 and said he was willing to abolish government by spilling blood and killing four or five Democrats, including Clark, the U.S. attorney’s office for the Western District of Pennsylvania said in a statement Friday. Miller also threatened violence against Black people “to keep them in line if he had to,” prosecutors said. Before ending the call, Miller called a staffer an offensive name and said the staffer would die in his forthcoming civil war.

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“Threatening to injure members of Congress is a crime, not protected-speech,” U.S. Attorney Scott Brady said in the statement. “As the events of the past year show, there are individuals intent on harming our public servants and law enforcement. We will vigorously and proactively investigate, disrupt and prosecute those individuals when they violate federal law.”

Clark has served in the House in 2014, following her win in a special election, and was elected assistant speaker last November, making her the fourth-ranking member in the House of Representatives and the most powerful congresswoman in state history. Her office could not immediately be reached for comment on Sunday afternoon.

Several months after contacting Clark’s office, Miller made calls to Burr’s Washington, D.C., office on Jan. 7, 2020, according to prosecutors. In the first call, Miller allegedly said he was going to put a bullet in Burr’s head. In the second call, which was transferred to a person in Tennessee, Miller said he was willing to shoot four or five senators in the head, prosecutors said.

Burr, a long-serving Republican, was recently censured by other members of his party over his vote to convict former president Donald Trump during Trump’s second impeachment trail before the Senate.

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Miller faces a total maximum sentence of five years in prison and a fine of $250,000 for his three counts of threatening to injure other individuals using interstate commerce, officials said. He appeared in court Friday and was released on a $25,000 unsecured bond.

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