Joseph Cecil Vandevere, 53, of Black Mountain, N.C. was sentenced on June 2 to ten months in prison and one year of supervised release for using social media to communicate interstate threats.
According to filed court documents, evidence presented at trial, and the sentencing hearing, on March 13, 2018, Twitter user @DaDUTCHMAN5, later identified as Vandevere, used his social media account to send a message that contained a threat to injure an individual identified in court records as Q.R. In the message, Vandevere sent Q.R. a picture of a lynching accompanied by a death threat. FBI agents interviewed Vandevere on July 18, 2018, at which time he admitted to using social media under pseudonyms to send threatening messages. As trial evidence established, Vandevere sent the death threat to Q.R. because he did not agree with Q.R.’s religious beliefs.
On December 6, 2019, a federal jury convicted Vandevere of making a threatening communication to injure another person through interstate commerce. The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Asheville prosecuted the case for the United States.