Texas Resident Sentenced for Threats Against Georgia Officials Post-Trump Election Loss

Texas Resident Sentenced for Threats Against Georgia Officials Post-Trump Election Loss

A Texan individual, who used Craigslist to solicit the killing of Georgia election officials following the 2020 presidential election, was handed a two-year prison sentence on Wednesday, according to the U.S. Justice Department.

Chad Christopher Stark had admitted guilt on August 31 in a federal court in the Northern District of Georgia. He pleaded guilty to a single charge of sending a threatening message through a telecommunications device and received the maximum sentence allowable for the offense.

“This sentence should serve as warning — illegal threats against the public servants who make our democracy work will be met with the full force of the Justice Department,” Attorney General Merrick Garland stated in a press release.

Stark’s case marked the inaugural prosecution by a federal task force formed in response to a surge of intimidation aimed at election administrators since 2020.

This task force on election threats was established shortly after Reuters released the initial instalment in a series of investigative reports that detailed over 850 threats and menacing messages directed at U.S. election workers.

The Stark case is connected to the former U.S. President Donald Trump’s efforts, as a Republican, to overturn the election victory of Democrat Joe Biden in Georgia. 

Following statements from officials such as Georgia Governor Brian Kemp and Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger affirming the accuracy of the state’s electoral count and their refusal to cooperate with attempts to undermine it, both became targets of threats.

On January 5, Stark, aged 55, posted a message on Craigslist urging “Georgia Patriots” to harm election officials and their families, identified in court documents only as officials A, B, and C, and offered a reward of $10,000.

The FBI’s Atlanta field office looked into Stark’s case.

Atlanta Special Agent in Charge Keri Farley said that, “Sending death threats and urging others to act is not protected speech — it is a crime.”

With more than two years of expertise in news and analysis, Eileen Stewart is a seasoned reporter. Eileen is a respected voice in this field, well-known for her sharp reporting and insightful analysis. Her writing covers a wide range of subjects, from politics to culture and more.