New York man accused of making death threats against Schumer, Schiff

New York man accused of making death threats against Schumer, Schiff
© Getty

A man in New York has been charged with making death threats against Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerUS national security policy in the 117th Congress and a new administration Voters say Biden should make coronavirus vaccine a priority: poll New York City subway service could be slashed 40 percent, officials warn MORE (D-N.Y.) and House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam SchiffAdam Bennett SchiffTrump tells GSA that Biden transition can begin Hillicon Valley: Leadership changes at top cyber agency raise national security concerns | Snapchat launches in-app video platform 'Spotlight' | Uber, Lyft awarded federal transportation contract Democrats accuse GSA of undermining national security by not certifying Biden win MORE (D-Calif.), citing their role in the impeachment effort against President TrumpDonald John TrumpBiden team wants to understand Trump effort to 'hollow out government agencies' Trump's remaking of the judicial system Overnight Defense: Trump transgender ban 'inflicts concrete harms,' study says | China objects to US admiral's Taiwan visit MORE.

Salvatore Lippa II, 57, of Greece, N.Y., was charged with threatening to assault and kill federal officials and interstate communication of a threat on account of the performance of their official duties, the U.S. Attorney's Office in the Western District of New York announced this week.

According to court documents reviewed by Assistant U.S. Attorney Sean Eldridge, Schiff's office in Washington, D.C., received a voicemail on Jan. 23 that included a death threat. Two weeks later, on Feb. 4, Schumer's office in Albany, N.Y., received a threatening voicemail as well.


The United States Capitol Police investigated the mysterious calls and tracked them back to Lippa, who subsequently acknowledged to police that he made the calls, authorities said.

Lippa "admitted to making the threatening calls to Congressman Schiff and Senator Schumer because he was upset about the impeachment proceedings," the Justice Department said in a press release.

A transcript from Schumer's phone call included threatening language against the chairman and Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiVoters want a strong economy and leadership, Democrats should listen On The Money: Biden to nominate Yellen for Treasury secretary | 'COVID cliff' looms | Democrats face pressure to back smaller stimulus Democrats face increasing pressure to back smaller COVID-19 stimulus MORE (D-Calif.), local CBS affiliate WROC reported.

“Hey Schumer, you and Nancy Pelosi are two of the biggest ... scumbags who ever lived. And let me tell you something, somebody wants to assassinate you, I’m going to be the driver,” the transcripts say in part.

Schumer responded to the threat during an appearance in New York earlier this week. 

"There are always haters, and I just want to compliment law enforcement here in the Rochester area," he told reporters.

Lippa faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison, a $250,000 fine, or both. He was released from custody on Wednesday with limited restrictions and a monitoring device.