FREDERICK, Md. — A Maryland man has been arrested on suspicion of threatening to kidnap and kill Democratic presidential hopeful former Vice President Joe Biden and his running mate, Sen. Kamala Harris, law enforcement officials said Wednesday.
Officials said Frederick County resident James Dale Reed, 42, was caught on a home surveillance camera leaving a threatening note on a doorstep in the early morning hours of Oct. 4. In the note, Reed threatened supporters of the Democratic ticket and made violent, explicit death threats against Biden and Harris that included a threat to execute them on national television.
“This is a warning to anyone reading this letter, if you are a Biden/Harris supporter you will be targeted,” the note Reed allegedly left said, according to court records. “We have a list of homes and addresses by your election signs. We are the ones with those scary guns, we are the ones your children have nightmares about, The Boogeymen coming in the night.”
Reed initially denied having written the note, but he admitted to being behind it after authorities asked for and got his palm prints and a handwriting sample on Oct. 15, officials said. He told authorities that he wrote the note on Oct. 3 “because he was upset at the political situation,” court records show.
He told authorities that he didn’t know the homeowner whose house he left the note at, but that he instead “took the letter to the first house he saw with multiple democratic political signs.”
Reed was known to the Secret Service because he made a threat against another person under the agency’s protection in 2014, according to court records.
“Conduct like this that threatens major candidates and fellow citizens only undermines our democracy and the principles upon which America was founded,” U.S. Attorney for Maryland Robert Hur said in a statement obtained by The Baltimore Sun. “We will not tolerate threatening conduct that seeks to intimidate, harass or dissuade Americans from exercising their right to vote.”
Authorities arrested Reed on a charge of making threats against a major candidate for president and vice president, according to court records. Frederick Police Lt. Kirk Henneberry told the Frederick News-Post that he’s been held in jail without bail since Monday.