A 45-year-old San Pedro man is expected to be sentenced Monday for threatening to kill Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Los Angeles, over comments she made about President Donald Trump.
Anthony Scott Lloyd pleaded guilty in April to a single federal count of threatening a United States official. The charge carries a maximum possible sentence of 10 years behind bars, but both prosecution and defense agree that a three-year probationary sentence is appropriate. The final decision, however, belongs to U.S. District Judge Stephen V. Wilson.
In a letter filed with the court, Waters said that while she appreciates that Lloyd pleaded guilty and expressed remorse, a lenient sentence would “only embolden others to engage in similar conduct.” LLoyd should “be held accountable for his actions in a manner extending beyond probation,” the congresswoman wrote.
Lloyd made the threat during a phone call to Waters’ Capitol Hill office. He had become angered while listening to talk radio last Oct. 22, when he heard a report in which Waters made disparaging comments about Trump, according to court papers.
“If you continue to make threats toward the president, you’re going to wind up dead, Maxine, ’cause we’ll kill you,” Lloyd said in a voicemail.
He also used a racial slur — the N-word — to refer to Waters and an anti-gay slur in the message, according to Assistant U.S. Attorney Jake Nare, who read LLoyd’s voicemail message to the court during the April guilty plea hearing in downtown Los Angeles.
After the message was received, one of Waters’ staff members contacted the U.S. Capitol Police, which notified the FBI.
An FBI agent interviewed Lloyd, who admitted leaving the voicemail but swore he had no intent to actually harm Waters.
Lloyd, who lives with his grandmother and is free on $20,000 bond, identified himself as a “pro-president supporter” during the interview, court papers show.
Waters has been one of Trump’s most forceful critics on Capitol Hill. For his part, Trump has referred to her several times as a “low-I.Q. individual.”
Water said in a statement in November that her district is “very diverse, and though we don’t always agree, my constituents would never threaten me. We are collectively focused on the progress, safety and security of our communities.”
In a sentencing memorandum, prosecutors said LLoyd’s racist tirade appears to have arisen from watching news coverage “containing comments about the President made by Congresswoman Waters during a political rally.”
A defense attorney wrote that LLoyd’s behavior stems from “untreated mental illness and substance abuse.”
The government is recommending a three-year probationary sentence, including a year under home detention. The defense is asking that LLoyd receive probation, which would include location monitoring and “continued mental health counseling.”
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