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AP Soft Pedals Death Threats To WI GOP

From a wildly uninterested Associated Press:

Wisconsin woman charged for threats to state senators

A Wisconsin woman accused of emailing death threats to GOP state lawmakers during the Capitol debate over the collective bargaining law was charged Thursday with two felonies.

By: Jason Smathers, Associated Press, Superior Telegram
April 1, 2011

MADISON, Wis. — A Wisconsin woman accused of emailing death threats to GOP state lawmakers during the Capitol debate over the collective bargaining law was charged Thursday with two felonies.

Katherine Windels, 26, was charged with two counts of creating a bomb scare, along with two misdemeanor counts of computer-based threats to injure or harm. The charges carry a combined maximum penalty of 7.5 years in prison.

The criminal complaint accuses the Cross Plains woman of sending two e-mails to senators threatening to shoot them and plant bombs around their homes.

The first message sent March 9 to Sen. Robert Cowles of Green Bay said the sender and others had decided to kill the Republican senator by "arriving at your house and putting a nice little bullet in your head," the complaint said. The email also claimed the group had planted bombs around the senator’s house and car and the Capitol building.

A similar email with the same threats was sent to other Republican senators two hours later. Both emails chastised the lawmakers for voting earlier that day for the budget repair bill, which strips most public employees of collective bargaining rights. The emails also praised Republican Sen. Dale Schultz of Green Bay, who was not sent a threat, as "heroic" for voting against it.

For the record, these death threats were sent to at least 15 Republican state senators. You would think that would warrant a mention.

The emails were sent from a computer account that appeared to belong to someone named Lisa Patterson. Police contacted Patterson, who said she didn’t set up the account, the complaint said.

There is more about Ms. Patterson below.

Authorities eventually tracked the computer’s IP address — the unique number assigned to every computer that connects to the Internet — to Windels’ parents. Police approached Windels, who allegedly admitted she sent the emails but said she never meant to carry out the attacks

Dane County District Attorney Ismael Ozanne said Windels had not yet been served with the complaint.

The complaint was filed hours after the [Wisconsin] Department of Justice expressed concern that Ozanne had not yet filed charges against the suspect. Windels is the only person charged so far for threats against the lawmakers.

From what we can tell, Ms. Windels has yet to be arrested. In fact, other reports indicate that the DA has no plans to arrest her.

It should be noted that the DA here, Mr. Ozanne, is a Democrat. And he has been quite active in supporting the union protesters in Madison. Indeed, Mr. Ozanne has even filed a suit claiming that the Walker reform bill is illegal. But it is probably just a coincidence that he did not even file charges until he was leaned on.

This article fails to note that Ms. Windels appears to be a kindergarten and elementary school teacher. She is reported to be a 2010 graduate of Madison Area Technical College with an Associate’s Degree in Early Childhood Education.

Meanwhile, there are indications that this is not the first time that Ms. Windels has been accused of this kind of activity.

From the local ABC affiliate in Madison, WKOW:

Suspect in threats to senators investigated last fall

March 31, 2011

A Cross Plains woman charged with felony crimes for allegedly threatening state senators over the budget repair bill was investigated by Madison police officers last fall over text messages.

Police reports released to WKOW27 News show a Madison woman contacted police over concerning text messages from Katherine Windels.

Dane County district attorney Ismael Ozanne Thursday charged Windels for allegedly sending e-mails to fifteen republican state senators,  threatening to kill them over their actions on proposed public employee collective bargaining revisions. A criminal complaint states Windels set up an email address under the name of acquaintance Lisa Patterson and used that address to deliver the email threats.

Madison police reports show Patterson told police on Oct. 14, 2010 she had received text messages from Windels and wanted follow up from officers. 

Madison police’s records custodian redacted all reference to the content of the text messages in reports released to WKOW27 News.

In the reports, an officer stated he tried to contact Windels,  but was unsuccessful,  and ultimately left a voice mail message telling her to cease any contact with Patterson.

In other words, it would appear that Ms. Windels pretended to be a person she had previously threatened, when she threatened the Republican state senators.

Meanwhile, the national coverage of this story has been conspicuous for its absence. Indeed, the Associated Press article above does not seem to have been published anywhere but in local papers.

And the stringer who wrote this story, Mr. Smathers, was until just very recently the editor of the University Of Wisconsin’s student newspaper, the Badger Herald.

This is a far cry from the kind of coverage that the shooting in Arizona got from the AP and the rest of the wire services.

This article was posted by Steve on Monday, April 4th, 2011. Comments are currently closed.

6 Responses to “AP Soft Pedals Death Threats To WI GOP”

  1. proreason says:

    It’s simple. The violence, bullying and death threats in Wisconsin can’t be publicized because our Dear Leader has dictated a new tone of civility.

    Similarly, the reason that the world media has missed the major story out of the Middle East was revealed yesterday. The major story, of course, is that the anger in the ME for decades isn’t about Israel at all; it’s about the dictators that oppress the people of every country there. And the reason the fair and balanced world press has been missing that story for decades is that the only country they have been allowed to operate in freely is Israel…so naturally, they would focus on Jew hatred rather than the truth. That one is all about “logistics”, you see. (I’m not kidding)

  2. tranquil.night says:

    “If a tree falls in the woods but no one is around to hear it..”

    What we have is a whole deforestation of the rule of law. We’ll see Tuesday with this judge’s election whether Wisconsin voters have stuck their head back in the sand.

  3. BillK says:

    Note that the Badger Herald is the more conservative, independent paper on the UW campus, with the “official” paper being the so far left everyone knew it was a joke Daily Cardinal.

    Looney left Daily Cardinal: http://www.dailycardinal.com/
    Badger Herald: http://www.badgerherald.com/

  4. wirenut says:

    Easy for non-cheeseheads to ridicule. Why, little “Ms. Manson” was just over enthusiastic about how a representive republic operates. Stop badgering the clueless. It’s not her fault her grey matter has more holes than a round of swiss,(cheese codespeak). Trust me on this.
    Cheese’n Rice all Fridays! She/He/It probably has a thing for Mooomar Gaddfly too. See what modern education spawns. Screw the mid-east, time to invade Madison. Remember the AlaMOOooo! Sorry Texas.
    I would like to see at least one (1) arrest and conviction for the defiling and destruction of my state capitol and other historic places.

  5. Papa Louie says:

    The media spent a week talking about the culture of hate coming from Sarah Palin and the right just because they used a map with cross hairs to “target” democratic districts prior to the last election. But they conveniently ignored the maps with gun sites that Democrats used to target Republican districts. You see, the media can sense the “real” motives behind both acts and just knows which one was motivated by hate, so you can trust them. That’s why they make no mention of hate motivating the depiction of Sara Palin being crucified. Because it’s not hate, it’s “art”.

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