Authorities arrested a Virginia man Friday for allegedly making threats to kill his congressman over his support for marijuana decriminalization.
Wallace Godwin, 69, met with Rep. Scott Taylor (R-VA) staffers Thursday at his Virginia Beach district office and threatened to shoot the congressman and two staff members due to Taylor’s views on marijuana policy, Fox News reported.
“Scott is having an event this Saturday. I am going to get my shotgun and do something about this,” Godwin reportedly said, according to court documents.
Godwin then allegedly pointed at two staffers and said, “You two are next.”
Taylor was not at the meeting and was scheduled to appear at several public events on Saturday, the Washington Post reported.
Godwin reportedly has a concealed weapons permit and has a history of acting aggressively with the congressman’s staff.
He has also been outspoken on social media about his anti-marijuana views and tried to sue the federal government for $500 million for not enforcing its marijuana laws, WKTR reported. His lawsuit was dismissed.
Godwin was charged with threatening to murder and assault a United States official and could face up to ten years behind bars if convicted. Federal prosecutors say, however, that sentences issued are often less than the maximum penalties.
Taylor praised law enforcement for its swift response and addressed the need for Americans to resolve their differences peacefully.
“The tone of our discourse has come to unacceptable and dangerous levels,” Taylor said in a statement after the arrest was announced. “I call on everyone, and I mean everyone, to please calm down. We are all Americans. There is so much that unites us.”