A 64-year-old man was accused of threatening to kill U.S. Senator Patty Murray, a Washington Democrat, in response to passage of health-care legislation that she supported.
The FBI arrested Charles Alan Wilson of Selah, Washington, today on charges of threatening a federal official, according to a statement from U.S. prosecutors. He allegedly left a series of threatening voice mail messages at Murray’s office in Seattle.
In one of the messages, Wilson allegedly said that someone would kill Murray, and that “if I have the chance, I would do it,” according to a criminal complaint filed in federal court in Seattle. Other messages quoted in the complaint were more explicit and laced with expletives.
Congress last month approved the most sweeping changes to the health-care system in four decades. Lawmakers reported threats and vandalism to their offices beginning shortly before final passage of the measure.
Wilson allegedly blocked his phone number when he called Murray’s office. Wilson, who told an FBI agent that he regularly carries a firearm, has a concealed weapons permit, according to the complaint.
Nobody answered the phone at the last known number for Wilson listed in court records.
Wilson was scheduled to appear in court today.
The senator’s office referred the case to the Federal Bureau of Investigation after receiving “numerous phone calls,” according to a statement from Matt McAlvanah, a spokesman for Murray. Murray’s office won’t make additional comment because the case is under investigation, the statement said.