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Texas man pleads guilty to threatening Georgia officials after 2020 election

The US Department of Justice says a Texas man pleaded guilty to threatening Georgian officials following the 2020 election.


September 1, 2023, 5:43 p.m.

A Texas man has pleaded guilty to threatening Georgian officials following the 2020 election, the US Department of Justice announced Friday.

Chad Stark, 55, of Leander, Texas, pleaded guilty Thursday to one count of interstate threat communication after being charged with posting threatening messages on Craigslist regarding the murder of government officials in Georgia. The charge carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison.

Prosecutors did not name the threatened officials in the federal court documents.

Stark’s arrest was the first by the Justice Department’s new Election Threats Task Force, amid a growing wave of violent threats against the people who count and get the vote. The threats come after former President Donald Trump repeatedly claimed, unprovenly, that voter fraud cost him the 2020 presidential election, leading some supporters to target election officials and workers.

“Across this country, our fellow citizens and neighbors, including many retirees, are choosing to serve as election officials, election workers, and in other capacities to help ensure free and fair elections in the United States,” he said. U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Buchanan said in a Friday statement. “They serve out of patriotic duty and appreciation for our nation and deserve to do so without fear of reprisal or threat of violence. »

Stark’s designated defense attorney did not immediately respond to a request for comment.


Associated Press writer Paul Weber of Austin contributed to this report.

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