Damian Williams, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, announced Friday that JOSHUA HALL pled guilty to a Superseding Information charging him with making threats to kill a member of the United States Congress. HALL previously pled guilty to wire fraud for impersonating family members of the then-President of the United States on social media to fraudulently raise funds for a fictitious political organization (the “Fraud Scheme”). At the time HALL made the threats to kill a member of the United States Congress, he was on pretrial release pending sentencing for the Fraud Scheme. HALL was arrested the same day the threats were made and was subsequently ordered detained pending sentencing. HALL pled guilty before United States District Judge Gregory H. Woods, before whom sentencing will be held on December 8, 2022.
U.S. Attorney Damian Williams said: “Joshua Hall made terrifying threats to the staff of a United States Congressman whom he disliked rather than attempting to effect change through any of the freedoms of expression that all Americans enjoy. These threats of violence endanger our public officials and thwart common decency, which is why this Office will continue to prosecute crimes like those committed by Joshua Hall.”
According to the Superseding Information, on or about August 29, 2022, HALL placed a series of telephone calls from in or around Yonkers, New York, to the California office of a member of the United States Congress (the “Congressman”). During those telephone calls, HALL conveyed threats to kill the Congressman to at least three different members of the Congressman’s staff (“Staff Member-1,” “Staff Member-2,” and “Staff Member-3”).
On a telephone call with Staff Member-1 and Staff Member-2, HALL stated, in substance and in part, that he had a lot of AR-15s; that he wanted to shoot the Congressman; that he intended to come to the Congressman’s office with firearms; and that if he saw the Congressman, he would kill him. He further stated, in substance and in part, that he wanted to “beat the shit out of” the Congressman and that he would find the Congressman wherever he was and hurt him. On a telephone call with Staff Member-3, HALL stated, in substance and in part, that he intended to come to the Congressman’s office to kill the Congressman with firearms.
HALL, 22, of Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania, pled guilty to one count of making interstate communications with a threat to injure, which carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison. HALL previously pled guilty to one count of wire fraud, which carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison.
The maximum potential sentences in this case are prescribed by Congress and are provided here for informational purposes only, as any sentencing of the defendant will be determined by the judge.
Mr. Williams praised the outstanding investigative work of the United States Capitol Police and the Federal Bureau of Investigation and thanked the City of Yonkers Police Department for their assistance.
The case is being handled by the Office’s Public Corruption Unit and General Crimes Unit. Assistant United States Attorneys Alexandra S. Messiter and Robert B. Sobelman are in charge of the prosecution.