A man in Michigan has pleaded guilty to a federal felony after threatening in an email to “hunt down and bleed out” the attorney of a whistleblower who sparked the impeachment of President Donald Trump.
Brittan J. Atkinson, 53, on the afternoon of Tuesday, Dec. 1, appeared via Zoom before U.S. District Magistrate Judge Patricia T. Morris and pleaded guilty to one count of making interstate communications threats to injure. The charge is punishable by up to five years in prison followed by three years of supervised release and a $250,000 fine.
No charges were dismissed, with Assistant U.S. Attorney Anthony P. Vance saying additional charges would not be filed against Atkinson. Vance added that the prosecution is recommending Atkinson’s eventual sentence not exceed the bottom of the guidelines, which are to be determined by the court.
Atkinson admitted to sending the email, and that it “contained a true threat to injure or harm another person.”
According to the report, no additional details were offered during the Tuesday hearing, but prosecutors allege that “Atkinson sent the threatening email to attorney Mark S. Zaid, who represented the intelligence official who blew the whistle on Trump’s involvement in pressuring Ukraine to investigate former vice president and current president-elect Joe Biden.”
Image credit: U.S. Attorney’s Office Eastern District