A man charged in federal court with threatening president Barack Obama via Twitter has entered a plea of not guilty. Jarvis Britton, 25, of Birmingham, Ala., has been held without bail since last month. After his arrest, Britton underwent a psychological evaluation, which revealed, a judge said, that Britton is not psychotic and acted intentionally.
In June, the Secret Service received an anonymous tip that a Britton was making threats against President Obama via Twitter. The first tweet, posted on June 28, read ”Free speech? Really? Let’s test this! Let’s kill the president!” and was followed by another: ”I’m going to finish this, if they get me, they get me! #ohwell. I think we could get the president with cyanide. #MakeItSlow.” The next day, as if his message wasn’t clear enough, Britton allegedly posted, ”Barack Obama, I wish you were DEAD!”
After the June rash of Tweets, the Secret Service told Britton that threatening the president is a big deal and to cut it out, but didn’t take any legal action against him. The USSS Internet Threat Desk kept an eye on him, and on September 14, they let the Secret Service know that he allegedly tweeted ”Let’s kill the president. F.E.A.R.”
Once again alerted to Britton’s tweets, the Secret Service had had enough. Now Britton is in federal custody, accused of ”knowingly and willfully” threatening to take the president’s life.
Britton’s Twitter account @iTweet_Unspok3n is still up, and there appear to be a few anti-Obama tweets that the Feds didn’t mention in their complaint. On September 8, Britton wrote, ”Who wants to put a bullet through @BarackObama head?” and on August 28, he posted this gem: “@BarackObama Alabama will see my power in the next 36hrs! Word to the secret service!”
Besides threatening the president, Britton seems to be pretty into Astrology (he’s a Saggitarius, of course) and, suprise, thinks 9/11 was an inside job.
See court documents below for a peek at the delightfully clumsy way federal prosecutors go about mentioning this newfangled “Twitter.”