Yesterday, Las Vegas police released this video from surveillance cameras at Senator Dean Heller’s office, where a note was left threatening to kill Heller if he voted to repeal ObamaCare. They’re asking for the public’s assistance in tracking down the suspect in the illegal entry, described as “a white male adult, between 50 to 60 years old, gray beard, heavy set, wearing a black baseball hat, short sleeve collared shirt and shorts.” The police now specify that they consider him a person of interest not just for the illegal entry, but specifically for the threat:
During the preliminary investigation by patrol officers, a threatening note addressed to Senator Heller was discovered near the door to his office. Officers took a report for Threatening or Obscene Letters or Writing (NRS 207.180). The LVMPD has an on-going investigation into this incident.
Interestingly, this is considered a misdemeanor under the statute specified here. If stupidity was a scalable crime, though, sticking a threat on a public official’s door where surveillance cameras would absolutely be installed would be a felony.
On Monday, media outlets in Las Vegas and elsewhere reported a break-in at Heller’s office, with few details. Only a couple of outlets provided original reporting of a threat left in the office from the burglar. Not long after, Jon Ralston got the inside information on the nature of the threat, and the reason this crime may be a bigger deal than the media interest indicates:
A note taped to Sen. Dean Heller’s Senate office was from someone asserting that he would lose his health care if the key senator voted for the repeal bill and that he would die if that happened and would take Heller with him, a law enforcement source said.
Metro Police has declined to disclose the contents of the note, which was taped to Heller’s office door at the Sunset Road office. But I have learned it apparently came from someone who wants Heller to vote against the current health care measure.
Despite some reports, Heller’s office was not burglarized, but the suspect appears to have gained access illegally to the complex.
Jon, whose reputation in Nevada politics and reporting is sterling, provided that update not long after the story broke. Interestingly, it didn’t seem to make a lot of impact on the national media. We picked it up, as did Townhall (our sister site), the Daily Caller, Business Insider, Newsmax, and The Hill. Otherwise, it’s flown under the radar. CNN’s Chris Cillizza reported on a barely veiled political threat to Heller from Donald Trump over his ObamaCare repeal position (which was certainly both newsworthy and amusing), but CNN still hasn’t reported on an actual threat to Heller. Would such a threat against a senator who planned to vote to preserve ObamaCare have been similarly ignored? Or would it have gotten national coverage?
Tipsters can call the Las Vegas police at 702-385-5555, but only if they have pertinent information to relay. The police will neither be interested in nor impressed by callers with legal analysis of the case or Heller’s politics. Trust me on this.