Gas Line Cut at Rep. Perriello’s Brother’s Home, After Teapartier Posts Address
March 24, 2010
(ChattahBox)—Why aren’t Republican leaders vigorously condemning the recent threats and violent acts directed towards Democratic lawmakers? After the GOP have whipped teapartiers into an enraged frenzy with hysterical rhetoric painting healthcare reform in apocalyptic terms, bricks have been hurled threw the windows of several Democratic offices and at least 10 Democratic lawmakers have had their lives threatened and have been provided with extra police security. And as reported yesterday, a Lynchburg Tea Party Leader posted the home address of Rep. Perriello’s (D-VA) brother, mistakenly believing it was the Congressman’s home address, urging angry teapartiers to “drop by.” The lawmaker’s brother has four children under the age of eight. Now, the FBI is investigating an incident at the brother’s home involving a cut gas line.
Politico is reporting that after the Rep. Perriello’s brother’s address was posted by Mike Troxel, a leader of the Lynchburg Tea Party, the family discovered a slashed propane gas line connected to a propane tank behind the brother’s home. FBI spokesman M.A. Myers told Politico, “This is very preliminary at this point, so we’re not making any comment at this time.”
According to Politico:
“Lee Catlin, community relations director for the Albemarle County Fire Marshal, said in a statement to POLITICO that the office is “investigating a suspicious incident” at the home of the congressman’s brother. “The Fire Marshal’s Office is conducting the investigation in cooperation with the FBI,” Catlin said. “While officials are not willing to characterize the exact nature of the incident because of the ongoing investigation, it did not involve an immediate threat to occupants of the residence. However officials are taking the incident very seriously and conducting a vigorous investigation,” the statement said.”
And Think Progress is reporting that Congressman Perriello’s brother’s address was also posted on the Facebook page of Nigel Coleman, leader of Danville Tea Party in Virginia. When the Danville News informed Coleman that the address he posted belonged to Congressman Perriello’s brother he replied, “Oh well, collateral damage.” Coleman later removed the address and acknowledged his comments were “in poor taste.”
Coleman denies that the posting of the address put the Congressman and his family in harm’s way. “There’s an assumption that we’re a violent group of people and we’d do something bad to the man,” he said. “We’re just trying to get heard.”
However, this is not the first time Coleman and his Danville teapartiers promoted behavior that could lead towards violence. In November, Coleman planned to burn Rep. Perriello in effigy, calling him a “turncoat traitor.” The group also planned to set flame to an image of the “treasonous witch” Nancy Pelosi. After receiving negative attention the burnings were called off.
Teapartier Mike Troxel’s Web site and the homepage of the Lynchburg Tea Party site are off line due to exceeding bandwidth limitations.
Congressman Perriello released a statement about the threats and the FBI investigation:
“My number one priority right now is ensuring the safety of my brother’s family, and I am grateful to law enforcement for their excellent work. While it is too early to say anything definitive regarding political motivations behind this act, it’s never too early for political leaders to condemn threats of violence, particularly as threats to other Members of Congress and their children escalate. And so I ask every member of House and Senate leadership to state unequivocally tonight that it is never OK to harm or threaten elected officials and their families with anything more than political retribution. Here in America, we settle our political differences at the ballot box.”