Federal inmate indicted for threatening judge

The SE Texas Record Jul. 28, 2010, 10:13am

A 57-year-old federal inmate has been arrested on charges of threatening a U.S. District Court Judge in the Western District of Texas.

John W. Manning was indicted by a federal grand jury in San Antonio on May 26 and charged with threatening to murder a federal judge with intent to retaliate against the judge and mailing a threatening communication, according to a press release from Eastern District of Texas U.S. Attorney John M. Bales.

Manning made an initial appearance in federal court in San Antonio on July 22.

According to information presented in court, in April, Manning, who is originally from the Houston area, was a prisoner of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice and serving time in the Garza East Prison Unit in Beeville for a theft conviction.

It is alleged that Manning, upset with U.S. District Court Judge Orlando Garcia, mailed the judge a threatening letter in which he indicated he planned to harm the judge upon his scheduled release from prison on July 22.

An investigation ensued and Manning was arrested by the U.S. Marshals Service for the Western District of Texas.

If convicted, Manning faces up to 10 years in federal prison.

This case is being investigated by the U.S. Marshals Service, the FBI and the Texas Department of Criminal Justice OIG. It is being specially prosecuted by Eastern District of Texas Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert L. Hobbs.

It is important to note that an indictment should not be considered as evidence of guilt and that all persons charged with a crime are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

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