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Wednesday, February 28, 2024

Former Sheriff’s Deputy Indicted for Threatening to Burn Down Plymouth County Courthouse and Kill Law Enforcement Officers

Ford also allegedly exhorted other law enforcement officers to assist him by bringing guns, gasoline, C-4, armored personnel carriers and SWAT teams to his confrontation.

A federal grand jury in Boston indicted a former Middlesex County Sheriff’s deputy today for allegedly threatening to burn down the Plymouth County, Mass., Courthouse, to kill court security officers and “to get” current Middlesex County sheriff’s officers.

Joshua P. Ford, 42, of Kingston, Mass., was indicted on three counts of interstate transmission of a threatening communication. Ford is currently in state custody and will appear in U.S. District Court in Boston at a later date.

According to the indictment, Ford served as a deputy for the Middlesex County Sheriff’s Office between about 2009 and 2017. It is alleged that on March 13, 2023, Ford sent 12 emails to a total of about 140 people, almost all Massachusetts law enforcement officers. Each email allegedly contained the same text: stating “[there] is no more justice system anymore just WAR” and “I am calling on all able bodied officers my brothers in blue to suit up for a fight.” Ford then allegedly asked those law enforcement officers to arm themselves with firearms and armored vehicles and declared, “Tomorrow we burn down the Plymouth County Court house to the ground.”

It is further alleged that the emails included a link to a video Ford posted on YouTube and British video hosting service BitChute. According to the indictment, the video, titled, “War Has Been Declared F***’em All,” is an 11-minute recording of Ford in a kitchen, where he speaks directly to the camera. In the video, it is alleged that Ford’s principal assertion is that the justice system is corrupt, and makes various statements about police officers, correctional officers, court officers, a judge, a prosecutor, defense attorneys and others. Ford allegedly expressed particular contempt for Middlesex Sheriff’s officers, about whom he says, “And guess what? I’m f****** coming. I’m f****** coming, and hell’s f****** coming with me. I’m going to f****** get every last one of you mother*****s. I know where you work. And I am coming to get you.” Ford also allegedly threatened to “break the arms and legs of every court officer” and to “kill” court security officers working in the Plymouth County Courthouse. Ford also allegedly exhorted other law enforcement officers to assist him by bringing guns, gasoline, C-4, armored personnel carriers and SWAT teams to his confrontation, which he scheduled for 8:30 a.m. on March 14, 2023. Instead, local law enforcement arrested Ford on March 13, 2023 after the emails were sent.

The charges of interstate transmission of a threatening communication each provide for a sentence of up to five years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of up to $250,000. Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based upon the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and statutes which govern the determination of a sentence in a criminal case.

Acting United States Attorney Joshua S. Levy and Jodi Cohen, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Division made the announcement today. The Kingston Police Department and the Marshfield Police Department provided valuable assistance in the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Amanda Beck of the National Security Unit is prosecuting the case.

Read more at the Justice Department

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