A felon accused of threatening Sen. Raphael Warnock (D-Ga.) online the day Democrats regained control of both branches of Congress failed to secure his release from jail pending trial, a federal judge ruled on Wednesday.
“I am not releasing him. He represents a threat to the community,” U.S. Magistrate Judge Lois Bloom said of 40-year-old Eduard Florea, who had his first bond hearing pending charges of transmitting threats to injure and being a felon in possession of a weapon.
The evening before the siege of the U.S. Capitol, a user logged onto a social media platform popular with the far-right under the handle “LoneWolfWar” and began fantasizing about slitting throats. The user especially seethed about Sen. Warnock’s election as Georgia’s first Black senator, who along with fellow Georgia Democrat Jon Ossoff tipped Senate control to the Democrats. The account posted a flood of bile, vulgarity and death threats.
Federal prosecutors identified the user as Florea, a convicted felon whose house in Queens allegedly had stockpiles of weapons when they authorities searched it on Jan. 12.
In a memo from last week, prosecutors rattled off some of the chilling tirades Florea allegedly posted on Parler the evening of Jan. 5th.
“We need to all come to an agreement… and go armed… and really take back Washington,” Florea posted at 8:40 p.m. that evening, according to court papers.
A few minutes later, Florea allegedly added: ““Tomorrow may very be the day war kicks off…”
Commenting on another Parler user’s post “F*** RAPHAEL WARNOCK LOSER,” Florea allegedly replied: “Dead men can’t pass s*** laws.” Both of the profanities were uncensored when posted.
Prosecutors claim that he was posting similar material on Jan. 6th.
“Let’s go…I will be reaching out to patriots in my area so we can come up with a game plan… Here in New York we are target rich…. but there is only one that comes to my mind that is the starting point,” Florea allegedly posted. “Not sure where you are… but I would imagine you have one in mind too. Dead men can’t pass shit laws…. I will fight so help me god.”
On Wednesday, Florea was detained.
After the ruling denying bail, Florea’s lawyer Assistant Federal Defender Mia Eisner-Grynberg told Law&Crime in an email that she and her client would discuss next steps.
Read the prosecution’s bail memo here:
[Image via JIM WATSON/AFP via Getty Images]
Matt Naham contributed to this report.
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