News and Commentary

Man Arrested For Allegedly Calling In Death Threat To Ilhan Omar’s Office

A 55-year-old man from Addison, New York was arrested on Friday and charged with threatening to kill Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN).

Patrick W. Carlineo, Jr., had allegedly called Omar’s office on March 21 around noon and spoke to a staffer. Carlineo, according to a statement from the United States Attorney’s Office for the Western District of New York, asked the staffer: “Do you work for the Muslim Brotherhood? Why are you working for her, she’s a (expletive) terrorist. I’ll put a bullet in her (expletive) skull.”

The staffer referred the threat to the U.S. Capitol Police, Threat Assessment Section, which then investigated the call along with the FBI. Carlineo was identified as the suspect and arrested for “threatening to assault and murder a United States official,” according to the statement. If he is found guilty, he could face up to 10 years in prison, a $250,000 fine, or both.

Carlineo appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge Marian W. Payson Friday afternoon and is being detained prior to a hearing on April 10.

The Elmira Star-Gazette reported that Carlineo provided Omar’s staffer with a name and phone number, which the FBI traced. Agents questioned him on March 29. According to the criminal complaint, Carlineo allegedly told the FBI that “he is a patriot, that he loves President Trump and hates radical Muslims in government,” the Star-Gazette reported.

He also allegedly told FBI agents he didn’t remember exactly what he said to Omar’s staffer but it was probably close to what they claimed. Carlineo also acknowledged, when agents asked, that he had a shotgun and .22-caliber rifle in his residence.

Omar has been heavily criticized, especially by the Right, for her frequent anti-Semitic comments since she has come to Congress. She has tweeted that Israel has “hypnotized the world, may Allah awaken the people and help them see the evil doings of Israel,” called the Israeli government the “apartheid Israeli regime,” accused American Jews of having “dual loyalty” and suggested American politicians are bought and paid for by the American Israel Public Affairs Committee.

Still, threatening a member of congress — or anyone, for that matter — is wrong and indefensible.