Joaquin Amador Serrapio Jr. is accused of posting threats against President Barack Obama on Facebook. Jeff Burnside reports.
The Miami man charged with threatening to kill President Barack Obama used a fake Facebook account to post his threats and sent text messages to friends saying he was "challenging" the administration, according to a criminal complaint released Tuesday.
Joaquin Amador Serrapio Jr., 20, was arrested Thursday for making threats against Obama during the president's trip to Miami last week.
"Who wants to help me assassinate Obummer while hes at UM this week?" Serrapio wrote last Tuesday on the Facebook account under the alias "Jay Valor," according to the complaint.
According to the complaint, two days later, the day Obama spoke at the University of Miami, Serrapio posted again on the "Jay Valor" page.
"If anyones going to UM to see obama today, get ur phones out an record. Cause at any moment im gonna put a bullet through his head and u don't wanna miss that! Youtube!" he wrote, according to the complaint.
That same day, after receiving information from the Coral Gables Police Department, federal agents raided Serrapio's home he shares with his mother in the 200 block of Southwest 136th Place in Miami, the complaint said.
While searching a bedroom, agents found an Apple iPad that showed the "Jay Valor" post, the complaint said. The agents also found a sniper rifle-style Airsoft pellet gun and a handgun-style Airsoft pellet gun, the complaint said.
After Serrapio was taken into custody, he admitted to agents that he maintained the "Jay Valor" Facebook account and had posted the statements, the complaint said.
When agents searched his cell phone, they found a series of text message between Serrapio and a friend, who warned Serrapio that he could get in trouble, the complaint said.
"I know i can b killed by this communist administration and im challenging them. Lets see what those mother--ckers got," Serrapio wrote, according to the complaint. "Hell yeah im a boss an the secret service will find that out soon."
When the friend asked if the secret service would see the Facebook posts, Serrapio replied, "I hope :) i wanna kill at least two of them when they get here," the complaint said.
Serrapio was charged and pleaded not guilty before a federal magistrate, who set his cash bond at $20,000, in addition to a $50,000 personal surety bond that his parents signed, according to court records.
Serrapio is due to be arraigned in federal court on March 9.
"It's better to be safe than sorry where you have credible evidence, and in this case where you have repeated statements published indicating a time and a place where this indiviudal apparently wanted to do bodily harm to the president," said attorney David Milian of the law firm Carey Rodriguez Greenberg & O'Keefe. "When you've got that much specificity – a time, a place, a location – it's certainly within the Service's duty to make sure no bodily harm comes to the president."