Ledes from the Land of Enchantment

So far, what has happened to the Las Cruces man who allegedly threatened to kill Biden?

LAS CRUCES – Since his arrest in May, attorneys had been busy for and against a Las Cruces man accused of threatening the murder of his family and claiming to kill President Joe Biden.

The defendant’s attorneys have raised questions about the federal government’s desire to take certain evidence. Meanwhile, the federal government has raised its own questions, wondering whether the man’s outbreak in court and the open threats against FBI agents indicate that he is incapable of standing.

The litany of motions and responses to motions are the latest developments in the ongoing proceedings against John Thornton.

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John Thornton

The FBI accused 39-year-old Thornton of sending three threatening messages to estranged family members in Texas and Florida in breach of federal law. The text messages also reveal that Thornton claims, according to court records, that US President Joe Biden will be executed.

“Tell me your father is the revolutionary war general,” read a text message in the affidavit. “Now 5 stars. 5 stars after I executed Joe Biden for treason.”

While the federal affidavit contained text messages indicating that Thornton intended to kill the president, federal prosecutors stressed in previous hearings that they would not bring charges against these threats because they were not credible.

Instead, prosecutors are attempting to bring charges in international trade communications involving any risk of harming someone else’s person. In addition to conspiratorial messages, FBI agents said in the affidavit that Thorton planned to kill his ex-wife.

“Just so you know, my ex-wife is a traitor and will likely be executed by my new government,” Thornton reportedly wrote in a text message.

After his arrest, a federal judge ruled that Thornton was dangerous and would be held in prison while he awaited trial.

The story goes on

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Fit to face trial

Prior to his arrest and during the recent hearings, Thornton was not shy to speak up.

According to an FBI agent who interviewed and then arrested the defendant, Thornton described his alleged actions not as interstate threats but as interstate promises. The FBI agent also said Thornton promised to execute her as well.

During a pre-trial hearing, Thornton also interjected when U.S. Assistant Attorney Marisa A. Ong spoke. Thornton shouted “Objection, full context,” then “Don’t pick and choose,” when his attorney and then the judge told him to stop interrupting.

Additionally, Thornton’s alleged motivation for sending threats also raises questions about his ability to stand up to justice. In the months leading up to his arrest, Thornton created dozens of Facebook posts by Canadian computer company D-Wave Systems Inc.

In posts on Facebook, Thornton accused D-Wave Systems Inc. of drugging people with methamphetamine at the request of the government.

“I’m killing them because of the superconducting quantum tunneling into the brain waves of methamphetamine users around the world. mk ultra, b it’s Methamphetamine Kinetics Superconducted, ”read a text message in the affidavit.

From the outbreaks to the content of the news, federal prosecutors questioned Thornton’s ability to understand the proceedings. But Thornton felt different.

“In this case, the defense attorney had personal contact with Mr. Thornton to discuss his charges and has no reason to believe that he does not understand the nature of the charges and the implications of the trial against him,” said Thornton’s attorney, Assistant Federal Defense Attorney Bernadette Sedillo said in her response request.

Sedillo added that Thornton asked her questions about the trial and has suggested preliminary investigations in his defense.

“Mr Thornton values ​​due process and is aware of his right to due process. He understands the players in the courtroom and their roles,” said Sedillo.

She also addresses the outbreak during previous hearings, saying Thornton followed his attorney and judge’s instructions to come forward when asked. Sedillo said Thornton was having a hard time keeping up with his lawyer because these hearings were not held in person.

“He is certainly not the first defendant to attempt testimony at hearings,” she said.

Ultimately, US Judge Gregory Wormuth said Thornton’s statements and actions in courts did not indicate a lack of understanding of legal proceedings. And so the case continues.

Wormuth also declined a continuation request after the federal prosecutor requested another 30 days to prepare for the trial. In the motion, federal prosecutors said they needed the extra time to avoid a possible second trial on possible new charges from a search of Thornton’s Facebook page.

Thornton and Sedillo opposed this request. They said there was no reason why a hearing in mid-October would not be appropriate.

However, in mid-September Thornton requested the process to be continued and initiated the process.

Thornton’s movements

After the initial charges of sending threats across state lines, federal prosecutors attempted another attack – cyberstalking. The government said new evidence came to light after receiving a search warrant to search Thornton’s Facebook page.

Thornton and Sedillo denied these allegations and asked the judge to dismiss them. The defense also requested that several pieces of evidence, including statements Thornton had given FBI agents, be excluded from the trial.

Sedillo said Thornton told the FBI agents he didn’t want to talk when they took him for questioning. But the agents persisted, Sedillo said, violating Thornton’s rights. Thornton also called for previous domestic violence allegations not to be brought to the jury when the case is brought to trial.

The federal prosecutors also moved a motion urging Thornton and Sedillo to refrain from discussing Thornton’s conspiracy theories about meth and the government. You said in a motion that this would only confuse the jury.

None of the seven motions have been decided, even if the negotiation deadline is nearing the end of November or the beginning of December.

What to expect when you expect (a trial version)

While the plot of a plea is unknown behind the scenes, both parties have come up with their lists of exhibits that they want to showcase.

The list of federal prosecutors contains much of what is in the criminal complaint. From the text messages to the Facebook post, the government witness list suggests they are building a case around what Thornton allegedly wrote.

Thornton and Sedillo, on the other hand, seem to be proving what Thornton believes. His exhibit list includes photos, freedom of information requests, messages to the CIA, and emails to the Canadian computer company, some with the subject line “HAMAS KNOWS YOU GUYS MK-ULTRA”.

As the trial date approaches, the two parties will meet again on December 1st to discuss the government’s exhibition list.

Justin Garcia is a public safety reporter for Las Cruces Sun-News. He can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter @ Just516garc.

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This article originally appeared in Las Cruces Sun News: John Thornton: Case of NM Man Allegedly Threatening to Kill Biden

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