Man arrested for offering $500 bounty to kill ICE agents
A Massachusetts man was arrested Thursday on charges of offering a $500 bounty on Twitter to anyone who killed an ICE agent the latest in a series of horrific threats aimed at the immigration law enforcement amid the ongoing deportation debate.
Brandon J. Ziobrowski, 33, invited people to message him with plans.
“Let’s make this work,” he told his 448 followers on the social media platform.
The account, @Vine_II, has been suspended by Twitter.
But one message included in the indictment details the threatening post, made July 2, just as congressional Democrats and immigrant-rights activists were calling for abolishing U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
“I am broke but I will scrounge and literally give $500 to anyone who kills an ICE agent,” Mr. Ziobrowski said.
Two of his followers actually “liked” the posting, the government said in the indictment.
“Ziobrowski’s July 2, 2018 tweet was designed to encourage violence and the murder of law enforcement agents who were simply enforcing federal laws government border control and immigration,” the grand jury charged. “Ziobrowski intended that his tweet communicate a threat and knew that it would be interpreted as a threat.”
The Homeland Security Department’s emerging threats center found the threatening tweet on July 5, while searching the internet for terrorism indications.
The message was deemed serious enough to issue a report to law enforcement throughout the country, the indictment says.
While the specific threat was egregious, it wasn’t an isolated instance of anger at ICE. In a March tweet, Mr. Ziobrowski responded to a post about ICE officers putting their lives on the line by saying he hoped that meant “dying I guess so there’s less of you?”
In another online forum, which the indictment doesn’t name, Mr. Ziobrowski in February said “shooting a cop should get you a medal.”