Birmingham man charged with tweeting threats against Obama

Birmingham man charged with tweeting threats against Obama

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BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) -

A 25-year-old man from Birmingham has been arrested and charged with threatening President Barack Obama by using Twitter.

The Secret Service confirms that Jarvis Britton was charged with making a threat against the president through the social media website Twitter.

According to court documents filed Sept. 21, a Secret Service agent received an anonymous call on June 30 informing him that a man named Jarvis Britton had used his computer to threaten the life of President Obama.

The threatening tweets originated on June 28, when Britton allegedly tweeted "Free speech? Really? Let's test this! Let's kill the president!"

He reportedly followed that message with another tweet the same day: "I'm going to finish this, if they get me, they get me! #ohwell. I think we could get the president with cyanide. #MakeItSlow."

Officials say Britton tweeted the next day, "Barack Obama, I wish you were DEAD!"

[PDF: Jarvis Britton court documents]

Court documents say a Secret Service agent interviewed Britton and informed him of the seriousness of the issue but no further action was taken at that time.

On Sept. 20, the USSS Internet Threat Desk in D.C. contacted the Secret Service agent and informed him that Britton sent another tweet threatening the president's life on Sept. 14. That message read: "Let's kill the president. F.E.A.R."

Based on those messages, authorities said they have probable cause to believe Britton "knowingly and willfully" threated to take the president's life.

Neither U.S. Attorney Joyce White Vance nor public defender Kevin Butler were available Monday to speak about the case.

A preliminary detention hearing for Britton is scheduled for Wednesday, Sept. 26, 2012 at the Hugo L. Black courthouse in Birmingham. Britton is currently in federal custody.

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