A man has been arrested and charged in federal court with sending emails that threatened to harm and kill Dr. Anthony Fauci, National Institutes of Health Director Dr. Francis Collins, and their families, federal prosecutors in Maryland announced Tuesday.
A criminal complaint filed Monday charges Thomas Patrick Connally Jr., 56, with threats against a federal official and interstate communication containing a threat to harm.
Beginning in December and up to last week, Connally used a Switzerland-based encrypted email service to send a series of emails to Collins and Fauci, according to an affidavit filed with the complaint.
Fauci is President Joe Biden’s chief medical adviser and director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, part of NIH in Bethesda, Maryland. He was appointed to his post in 1984, but his visibility has increased during the coronavirus pandemic. He has been a vocal supporter of vaccines and other preventive measures against Covid-19 and has been lauded for his longtime leadership in the fight against HIV/AIDS.
One email threatened that Fauci and his family would be “dragged into the street, beaten to death, and set on fire.”