A Washington D.C. officer has been cleared of allegedly threatening to kill First Lady Michelle Obama. Christopher Picciano faced further administrative action afar being demoted to a clerk position after talking about shooting Mrs. Obama.
Picciano, a member of the presidential motorcade, went so far as to show an associate the potential murder weapon, but it is not known if he was being serious or joking.
Although absolved on greater charges, he was found guilty of posting a job description depicting the president as a communist.
From the Washington Post:
Members of a departmental review board ruled that Christopher Picciano, a 17-year veteran who was a member of the elite presidential motorcade detail, should be suspended without pay for 40 days for conduct unbecoming an officer. His attorney, James W. Pressler, said his client is weighing an appeal. The city had sought to have Picciano fired.
“We’re pleased that he was exonerated of all allegations that he made threats against the first lady,” Pressler said. “He has maintained from the beginning that it was an off-the-cuff remark, a joke.”
The U.S. attorney’s office had declined to file charges against the officer, agreeing with the Secret Service that Picciano was not serious with his comment about Michelle Obama. But during the investigation, detectives found troubling though unrelated postings on the officer’s LinkedIn and Facebook accounts.
Threats against the First Family aren’t always taken so lightly. A man in Virginia was sentenced to a year in jail for tweeting about killing the president, on two separate occasions. Jarvis Britton was first investigated, and let go. A year later he repeated the offense online, which led to his incarceration.