Seattle Fire Department employee arrested, accused of sending threats to Seattle City Council member

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Seattle Fire Department employee arrested, accused of sending threats to Seattle City Council member

A Seattle Fire Department employee was arrested and charged with cyberstalking, computer violation and identity theft for emailing threats to a Seattle city council member, Seattle police said Friday.

Police did not reveal which councilor received the threats, but last month City Councilor Kshama Sawant called for an investigation after she said she received threatening emails from a fire department email address.

“Seattle police believe that a 42-year-old man who works for the Seattle Fire Department sent a series of threatening emails to a member of the Seattle city council earlier this year,” the police wrote.

Police said they first examined a fire department employee, but that person was eliminated as a suspect. The investigation resulted in a second employee, police said, and that person was arrested on Friday.

The police did not name the person who was arrested.

The man was admitted to King County Jail shortly before 12:30 p.m. Friday after being investigated for computer violations, identity theft and criminal harassment. He will appear in court for the first time on Saturday afternoon.

The Seattle Times does not name the SFD employee because he has not been criminally charged.

“The Seattle Police Department will fully investigate any threat posed by an officer and will work with prosecutors to ensure they are held accountable,” the department wrote.

The Seattle Fire Department confirmed that a firefighter / paramedic was arrested Friday morning while he was retiring.

“The arrest is related to threats from a fire department email address to a Seattle city council member in late 2020 and early 2021,” wrote spokeswoman Kristen Tinsley. “This person has been put on paid administrative leave in anticipation of the upcoming trial and internal investigation.”

Sawant, who previously called for an investigation, said she received the threats in December and January.

The emails Sawant received between December 17th and January 18th are both threatening and threatening.

“The time has come,” the emailer wrote on Monday, according to the emails from Sawant’s office. “Announce your resignation now, or else.”

“When you know what’s good, you know it’s time to go,” one person wrote in December. “If you need help leaving, jump head first from the top floor of your building. I’ll even push you. “

In a public letter last month, Sawant wrote, “I believe these emails need to be given the current political context with an encouraged right wing at the national level, the specific threatening content of the emails and the fact that they are from a city come to be taken very seriously email account in Seattle. “

Sara Jean Green contributed to this report.