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Press Release

Rochester Man Arrested on Charges of Threatening Congressman

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Central District of Illinois

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – A Rochester, Ill., man has been arrested and charged by criminal complaint with making a threatening communication against U.S. Congressman Rodney Davis. Randall E. Tarr, 64, of the 200 block of E. Mill St., Rochester, Ill., was arrested today and appeared in federal court before U.S. Magistrate Judge Tom Schanzle-Haskins in Springfield.

The affidavit filed in support of the criminal complaint alleges that in the morning of Nov. 25, 2019, Tarr called the Decatur, Ill., office of Congressman Davis and left a profanity-filled voicemail message in which he threatened to shoot the congressman.

According to the affidavit, the voicemail message was forwarded to U.S. Capitol Police, in Washington, D.C. Through caller ID, police identified Tarr as the alleged caller and U.S. Capitol Police contacted the Rochester Police Department to ask officers to make contact with Tarr. Rochester police officers made initial contact with Tarr on Nov. 25, at his residence. According to the affidavit, FBI officers subsequently interviewed Tarr.  

The complaint charges Tarr with one count of communication of a threat to injure a person, which is punishable by up to five years in prison, and one count of making a threat to a federal official, which carries a statutory maximum penalty of up to 10 years in prison.

During today’s hearing, Judge Schanzle-Haskins appointed the federal public defender to represent Tarr for purposes of determining bond. Tarr was released from custody under conditions, including home detention and location monitoring; prohibited contact with any victims and witnesses; prohibited from consumption of alcohol; and further, that Tarr cooperate in drug and alcohol screening and mental health evaluation. Judge Schanzle-Haskins scheduled the next court appearance for Tarr on Dec. 17, 2019.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Crystal Correa is representing the government in the prosecution. The FBI and Rochester Police Department are conducting the investigation.

Members of the public are reminded that a complaint is merely an accusation; the defendant is presumed innocent unless proven guilty.


Sharon Paul, Public Information Officer

Updated December 12, 2019

Violent Crime