Baltimore, Maryland – A federal grand jury returned an indictment late yesterday charging James Dale Reed, age 42, of Frederick, Maryland, on the federal charge of threats to a major candidate for President or Vice President—specifically, former Vice President Joe Biden and Senator Kamala Harris. Reed is currently in state custody and a federal warrant has been lodged as a detainer to ensure his appearance in U.S. District Court at a future date. A federal criminal complaint for the same charge was filed against Reed on October 21, 2020.
The indictment was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Robert K. Hur and Special Agent in Charge Bo Keane of the United States Secret Service – Baltimore Field Office.
“We take these types of threats extremely seriously. The right to vote and peacefully support the candidate of your choice are bedrocks of our democracy,” said U.S. Attorney Robert K. Hur. “Alleged conduct like this that threatens major candidates and fellow citizens only undermines our democracy and the principles upon which America was founded. We will hold accountable those who seek to intimidate, harass or dissuade Americans from exercising their right to vote.”
According to the single-count indictment and court documents, on October 4, 2020, a letter threatening candidates for President and Vice President—specifically, former Vice President Joe Biden and Senator Kamala Harris—with physical harm and execution, was left on the doorstep of a resident in Frederick in the early hours of the morning. The resident had several signs in the yard supporting the candidates threatened in the letter. The likeness of the subject delivering the letter was captured by a door camera.
If convicted, Reed faces a maximum sentence of five years in federal prison.
An indictment is not a finding of guilt. An individual charged by indictment is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty at some later criminal proceedings.
United States Attorney Robert K. Hur commended the U.S. Secret Service for its work in the investigation and thanked the Frederick Police Department for its assistance. Mr. Hur thanked Assistant U.S. Attorneys James G. Warwick and Joan C. Mathias, who are prosecuting the case.
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