Arizona Man Accused of Tweeting Threats While in DC - NBC4 Washington
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Arizona Man Accused of Tweeting Threats While in DC

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Arizona Man Accused of Threatening President, FCC Chair

    A man accused of posting threats to kill police and directing violent messages to the head of the Federal Communications Commission is under arrest. Scott MacFarlane reports. (Published Friday, July 12, 2019)

    A man accused of posting threats to the president, police and head of the Federal Communications Commission is under arrest.

    Thomas Catinella of Tucson, Arizona, tweeted the threats in late June, an affidavit from U.S. Capitol Police says.

    One of those tweets said, "I will begin stabbing police officers in the back. Steal their guns and shoot up the Capitol.”

    He was in the vicinity of the Capitol at the time, according to court filings, and hours later he was in Arlington, where FCC Chairman Ajit Pai lives.

    Catinella acknowledged having sent messages and emails to Pai, authorities said.

    He told federal agents he was just trying to get attention and did not want to hurt anyone.

    Catinella is in jail until a hearing Monday in D.C.

    The number of threats like this are rising in the D.C. area. An I-Team investigation found not only has the FCC chairman faced other threats this year, but threat investigations undertaken by Capitol Police at least doubled last year, fueled by social media posts.

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