By Eric Stevick Herald Writer
EVERETT — An Everett man accused of sending threatening emails to Gov. Chris Gregoire earlier this month might have mental health issues, according to the Washington State Patrol.
The man, 38, was arrested Friday for investigation of threatening the governor and illegally possessing firearms. An Everett District Court judge on Tuesday ruled he should continue to be held at the Snohomish County Jail in lieu of $25,000 bail.
A report written to establish probable cause to arrest the man said detectives believe he is “disturbed and delusional.”
On May 20, the man allegedly wrote to the governor’s website, which required the sender’s name, email address, mailing address and the subject. Troopers said he completed all of the requirements and wrote “Weapons” as the subject he wished to discuss.
The man wrote Gregoire that he was angry, adding: “I think you know why too. Why don’t you end it before I come down there with my gear to end it for you?”
Two State Patrol detectives showed up at the south Everett apartment the man shares with his father.
The suspect told detectives that he just wanted to take the governor out to dinner to discuss issues. He claimed the FBI had been monitoring him and his computer activity, even reading messages on the hard drive that were never sent.
The man told detectives he slapped his girlfriend four years earlier, leading to a domestic violence assault conviction. He said he was required to take a year of anger management counseling, but found it of no benefit.
The man’s father said the suspect had two handguns in a safe inside his room.
On May 24, the man allegedly sent more messages to the governor’s website. One said, “I’m going to kill the Governor for real.”
Another said, “I’m going to blow that (expletive) away. What am I waiting for? I don’t know. Good point.”
The next day, troopers with a search warrant collected all firearms and computers from the apartment. The man was found in his bedroom with a loaded revolver on the floor next to his bed.
This time he told investigators he did not want to answer questions.
The arrest was the second time in three months that somebody from Everett has been jailed after allegedly threatening the governor.
In the previous case, a suspect, 50, claimed aliens were telling him to assassinate Gregoire.
That threat was contained in a letter the man reportedly wrote to the state office of administrative hearings in Seattle. It wasn’t clear in court papers what the man was seeking in his letter.
The message was forwarded to the Washington State Patrol unit that provides security for the governor.
That man wrote he had been having hallucinations and that aliens were telling him to assassinate the governor, according to court papers.
Washington State Patrol spokesman Bob Calkins said threats against the governor generally are classified into two categories.
There are those with mental health issues and those who get angry.
“We do see the person who lets their irritation get the better of them and they say something in a flash and they almost immediately know it was out of line,” Calkins said.
The bottom line is the State Patrol must take all threats seriously, he said.
“When someone makes what appears to be a threat, we take it at face value,” he said.
Eric Stevick: 425-339-3446, firstname.lastname@example.org