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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Middle District of Georgia

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, August 30, 2018

Bleckley County Man Sentenced To Thirty Months Imprisonment For Making Threats Against Two United States Senators

MACON: Charles E. Peeler, United States Attorney for the Middle District of Georgia, announces that Jason Kenneth Bell, age 41, of Cochran, Georgia, was sentenced to serve 30 months in prison on two counts of Anonymous Telecommunications Harassment.  The sentence was handed down by U.S. District Court Judge Marc T. Treadwell on August 30, 2018.

In his plea agreement, Mr. Bell admitted that on March 1, 2017, he called the office of U.S. Senator Charles Schumer.  Mr. Bell left several messages after first speaking with an intern.  Mr. Bell did not identify himself in these calls, but he said he wished Senator Schumer did not have personal protection, and said that “I would hit you until I couldn’t lift my arms anymore.”

Mr. Bell further admitted that on October 23, 2017, he called the office of U.S. Senator Timothy Scott and, without identifying himself, stated that he was going to kill Senator Scott.  During that call, Mr. Bell also asked “are we as a white people supposed to just stand for this injustice or do we do what Dylann Roof did” referring to the self-declared white supremacist convicted of murdering nine African-American worshipers and attempting to murder more at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina in 2015.

Following his release from prison, Mr. Bell will be placed under the supervision of the United States Probation office for a period of one year. He is prohibited from contacting Senator Schumer, Senator Scott, any of their respective offices, or any member of their staff.

“Mr. Bell’s repeated threatening, abusive, and harassing phone calls landed him a deserving place in federal prison,” said United States Attorney Charles E. Peeler.  “Everyone has the right to express their views, no matter how distasteful, under the First Amendment, but no one has the right to threaten, abuse, or harass those they disagree with.  When civil discourse crosses the line to criminal activity, my office will vigorously prosecute those who violate the law.”

The case was investigated by the Macon Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation with assistance from the United States Capitol Police in Washington, D.C.  Assistant United States Attorney C. Shanelle Booker prosecuted the case for the United States.

Questions concerning this case should be directed to Pamela Lightsey, Public Information Officer, United States Attorney’s Office, at (478) 621-2603.

Topic(s): 
Violent Crime
Component(s): 
Updated September 5, 2018