Just a week after Election Day, federal prosecutors charged someone who believed in then-President Donald Trump’s stolen-election lies with threatening to kill Sen. Chuck Schumer and other Democrats. Court papers indicate that the man, Staten Island sex offender Brian Maiorana, intends to plead guilty.
“Soap Box, Ballot Box…that was fraudulently stolen from us,” Maiorana was quoted writing on Nov. 8, some five days after Election Day. “Now Cartridge Box.”
Maiorana allegedly directed his rage broadly, but he also made an unmistakable and antisemitic reference to Schumer, who later became the Majority Leader of a Senate under Democratic control.
“As the Jew Senator from Jew York said nothing is off the table,” Maiorana allegedly wrote, in an apparent quotation of Schumer’s remarks that “nothing is off the table” in the Democratic party’s unsuccessful effort prevent Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett’s confirmation.
Schumer had been talking about political procedure, but Maiorana put a different spin on the expression, citing a work of neo-Nazi fiction that has inspired far-right terrorism.
“The Turner Diaries must come to life,” Maiorana was quoted writing, referring to the book that inspired Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVeigh. “We blow up the FBI building for real. All the alphabet agencies assassination will become the new normal now…that the electoral process is finished.”
As described by prosecutors, The Turner Diaries depicts a violent revolution in the United States which leads to the overthrow of the federal government, a nuclear war, and a race war which leads to the systematic extermination of non-whites.
One of the inspirations for the 1995 attack on the Alfred P. Murrah building in Oklahoma City that killed 168 people, including babies in a daycare center, the tome has been found inside the house of accused U.S. Capitol insurrectionist Timothy Louis Hale-Cusanelli, an Army Reservist who can be found in court documents dressing up like Adolf Hitler. Hale-Cusanelli also had a copy of Mein Kampf, prosecutors say.
Two days after Election Day, Maiorana allegedly wrote that all Democrats and their families needed to be exterminated: “The carnage needs to come in the form of extermination of anyone that claims to be democrat…as well as their family members.”
The FBI found a semiautomatic firearm and ammunition in Maiorana’s apartment, leading to further criminal exposure for the convicted sex offender. He was later indicted on three counts: two for being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition and a third for threats to injure.
On Tuesday, U.S. District Judge Frederick Block released two single-page orders revealing that Maiorana “asked for permission to enter a plea of guilty and having consented to have a United States Magistrate Judge hear the application,” which the court granted.
Block separately allowed that hearing to take place remotely to prevent an “indefinite delay of the plea” during the continuing COVID-19 pandemic that could “result in serious harm to the interests of justice.”
Maiorana’s public defender James Darrow declined to comment. It is unclear whether his client intends to plead guilty on all counts, and if not, which charges he will admit.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York declined comment.
Read the orders revealing Maiorana’s guilty plea below:
(Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images.)
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