Connecticut man Gary Joseph Gravelle, aka Roland Prejean, was indicted Friday for allegedly threatening to hurt people and blow up property, according to the Department of Justice. One of those people was allegedly President Donald Trump.
The defendant mailed, emailed, and called people to communicate his threats, prosecutors said. A number of his letters allegedly contained a white powdery substance with statements claiming these was Anthrax. Besides Trump, threatened targets include mental health providers, federal probation officers, a federal judge, an airport, a federal prison in Washington, and a credit union in Bistol, Connecticut.
Gravelle was arrested September 8, 2018, according to the DOJ.
Authorities said he broke the law while out on probation for a similar case. In 2013, he was sentenced to 70 months in prison, and three years of supervised release for mailing threatening letters. Prosecutors back then said he sent a Post Office a letter saying he’d put a hidden bomb on the premises. There was an evacuation. A nearby town hall and public school also cleared out. Bomb squad technicians from the Connecticut State Police searched for the explosive, but they didn’t find any.
Prosecutors claimed that the defendant sent at least 50 other threatening letters to people such as a probation officers. A Connecitcut Superior Court Judge even received one containing a substance that was represented as “Liquid Anthrax.”
Gravelle pleaded guilty to one count of using the U.S. Mail to communicate a bomb threat, and four counts of mailing threatening communications.
Joseph Patten Brown, the defense lawyer in the previous case, told Law&Crime in an email that he will be representing Gravelle in this new one. In an inquiry, we noted entries in the previous case that concerned the defendant’s mental health and competency to face charges.
“At this point it would be premature for me to answer specific questions,” Brown wrote. “My client has, in my opinion, a documented history of mental health issues. He is currently being evaluated at a federal medical facility and until that is complete I cannot say for certain what our defense will be. I think this is a classic example of someone who needs treatment but instead has spent many years warehoused in the criminal justice system which simply is ill equipped to treat him.”
Note: Updated with a statement from Brown.
[Image via SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images]
Have a tip we should know? [email protected]