Ronnie D. McMillian, a 27-year-old New Jersey man, was arrested by FBI agents on Wednesday after allegedly making threatening phone calls to public officials, including Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) and the office of Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.).
According to the North Jersey Record, McMillian followed a hostile routine over a number of months, which eventually drew the attention of Capitol authorities:
McMillian allegedly would call the offices of the targeted public official and scream at the person who answers the call or the voicemail system, using vulgar language to attack the official’s positions on gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender rights, authorities said.
McMillian also threatened that he or others would harm the targeted public official. In July 2012, the U.S. Capitol Police warned McMillian that he could be arrested and prosecuted if he continued to make harassing and threatening communications.
He reportedly ignored the warnings, however, leaving a violent voicemail with Jindal's office in September. And on Dec. 17, McMillian allegedly set off law enforcement officials when he repeatedly called Bachmann's district office and threatened a staffer who fielded his call.
McMillian's initial court appearance was set for Thursday, the Associated Press reports. He faces two counts of transmitting threats to injure another through interstate commerce, which carry a maximum penalty of five years in prison for each charge. He also faces a fine of up to $250,000.
Bachmann has been on the receiving end of digital threats in the past. Earlier this year, a Twitter user drew an investigation after using the social media network to profess his "desire to engage in sadomasochistic activities with" Bachmann.
Politico reported that the perpetrator's tweets were graphic in nature and led to broader considerations about protections of anonymity on social media.