Everett man sentenced to prison for cyberstalking

MOUNT VERNON — Angry, ranting email sent to a Snohomish County deputy prosecutor earned an Everett man a stint in prison.

A Skagit County judge Thursday sentenced James R. Swanson to a year in behind bars. A jury earlier this month convicted Swanson of cyberstalking and cocaine possession.

Jurors were convinced that two messages Swanson fired off to a prosecutor in 2009 were threatening.

The jury also found that Swanson sent the email in retaliation against a public official performing her duties. That opened the door for prosecutors to ask for a sentence beyond the high-end of the standard range.

The judge Thursday agreed that Swanson deserved an extra four months behind bars. That lands Swanson in prison instead of jail.

Swanson had admitted he sent the email after the deputy prosecutor declined his request to file criminal charges against his now ex-wife. His defense attorney argued that Swanson never planned to harm the deputy prosecutor. Swanson told the judge Thursday that he wouldn’t have sent the messages if he had known it was against the law.

A Skagit County deputy prosecutor handled the case and a Skagit County judge presided over the trial to avoid the appearance of a conflict of interest.

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