A Texas man, the first arrest made by the Justice Department task force investigating threats against election officials, was sentenced to two years in prison for posts after the 2020 election, federal prosecutors said Wednesday. It was announced on .
Chad Christopher Stark, 55, is accused of posting threatening messages on Craigslist about killing government officials in Georgia. He pleaded guilty earlier this year to a charge of communicating an interstate threat.
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Prosecutors said Stark, a native of suburban Austin, used social media to urge Georgians to “form a militia” and shoot several unnamed officials and judges. The message was posted on January 5, 2021, the day before Congress was scheduled to certify the Electoral College vote.
“Christopher Stark threatened the lives of multiple election workers in an attempt to prevent them from performing their duties,” FBI Director Christopher Wray said in a statement. “Today’s ruling demonstrates the FBI’s unwavering commitment to protecting America’s elections from any attempt to undermine their integrity.”
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Mr. Stark’s federal public defender did not immediately respond to an email seeking comment.
Stark’s arrest was the first by the Justice Department’s Election Threat Task Force, which was created in 2021 amid mounting violent threats against those counting and securing votes. The threat came after former President Donald Trump repeated unproven claims that he lost the 2020 presidential election due to election fraud.