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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of New York

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, May 10, 2018

Rochester Woman Previously Convicted Of Threatening The President Charged With Threatening A Federal Judge

CONTACT:  Barbara Burns
PHONE:      (716) 843-5817
FAX #:         (716) 551-3051

ROCHESTER, N.Y. - U.S. Attorney James P. Kennedy, Jr. announced today that Christine Wright Darrisaw, 42, of Rochester, NY, was arrested and charged by criminal complaint with threatening to kill United States District Judge Frank P. Geraci, Jr. The charge carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. 

Assistant U.S. Attorney Craig R. Gestring, who is handling the case, stated that according to the complaint, the defendant is currently on supervised release following her 2014 conviction for threatening to kill former President Barack Obama. Chief U.S. District Frank P. Geraci, Jr. presided over that case. 

On December 15, 2017, Judge Geraci's chambers received two telephone calls from a number connected to the defendant. During both calls, the caller identified herself as Christine Wright Darrisaw. One of the judge’s law clerks answered the first call which came in at approximately 11:25 a.m. The caller was described as speaking quickly, clearly, and changed subjects rapidly and at one point stated “I am calling in a death threat against the Judge.” Wright Darrisaw claimed that two probation officers threatened death against the Judge and then she hung up. A short time later, at 12:01 p.m., the defendant again called Judge Geraci's Chambers which was answered by another law clerk. Wright-Darrisaw once again changed subjects rapidly. During that call, Wright-Darrisaw stated her and her boyfriend decided to "call in a terrorist threat." Wright-Darrisaw then stated “This is a death threat.”

The threats were then reported to the United States Marshal's Office.

The defendant made an initial appearance before U.S. District Judge Brenda K. Sannes of the Northern District of New York in Rochester and is being held pending a hearing on May 24, 2018, at 9:30 a.m.  

The complaint is the culmination of an investigation by the United States Marshal's Service, under the direction of Marshal Charles Salina.

The fact that a defendant has been charged with a crime is merely an accusation and the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

Updated May 11, 2018