A 27-year-old man was arrested on April 22 for allegedly threatening to cut out his congressman's tongue for endorsing Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.
The suspect, Jasper Bell, faces charges of intimidating a public servant and telephone harassment, reports the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Bell allegedly made threatening phone calls and sent letters to the office of Democratic Rep. Jim McDermott of Washington, as well as showing up to the congressman's office, where Bell reportedly yelled, spit and slammed his fists on the windows.
Bell later told police that he was angry at the representative's endorsement and had tried earlier to meet with him "professionally" so he could ask McDermott "why he would not vote with the majority of people in Washington," charging papers say, according to the Post-Intelligencer.
The Washington Democratic presidential primaries took place on March 26, where Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont swept the state with 79.6 percent of the vote to Hillary Clinton's 20.4 percent, notes the Guardian.
In King County, where McDermott and Bell live, Sanders won 67.3 percent to Clinton's 32.6. Despite this, McDermott announced that he will still be supporting Clinton, calling her an "alternative" to Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump and his "authoritarian movement," the Post-Intelligencer reports.
This made Bell angry, and he later said the threats he made to McDermott were "appropriate" because his "voice was being silenced."
"I was feeling voiceless myself, definitely a bad choice of words," Bell told detectives, according to charging papers.
In one call, the charging papers say, Bell demanded McDermott's home address and then threatened to cut out his tongue.
"I need to speak to the [expletive] piece of [expletive] now," Bell reportedly said in one call. "I will not be ignored."
Bell, who told investigators he works at a marijuana factory, is being held at King County Jail in Seattle pending a $200,000 bail. Police say he has since apologized for his "bad choice of words."