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Prosecutors: Man threatened Missouri, Tennessee congressmen

March 3, 2021 GMT

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (AP) — A federal grand jury indicted a southwest Missouri man on charges that he threatened to kill two Democratic congressmen from Missouri and Tennessee.

Prosecutors said Kenneth Hubert, 63, of Marionville, Missouri, threatened to assault and kill Rep. Emanuel Cleaver II of Missouri and Rep. Steve Cohen of Tennessee.

Hubert was indicted on Feb. 23. The three-count indictment was made public Wednesday after he was arrested and made his first court appearance, according to the U.S. attorney’s office in western Missouri.

Hubert allegedly threatened to assault and kill Cleaver on Jan. 7. He allegedly threatened Cohen on May 6, 2019. The indictment said both men were threatened to impede them from performing their officials duties, or in retaliation for the performance of their duties.

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Cohen was threatened in a phone call to his Washington, D.C., office, according to the indictment, which does not say how the threat to Cleaver was transmitted.

Cleaver told The Kansas City Star that he doesn’t know Hubert and he was unaware of the threat until Cohen told him about it last week.

“I didn’t even know that this guy had made a threat. It was completely news to me when Steve Cohen told me,” Cleaver said.

Cleaver was threatened the day after the Capitol riot in Washington, D.C., but Hubert was not involved in that event, said Don Ledford, a spokesman for the U.S. attorney’s office.

Cleaver represents Missouri’s 5th District, which includes Kansas City. Cohen represents Tennessee’s 9th District, which includes most of Memphis.

Hubert remains in custody pending a detention hearing on Monday. The federal public defender’s office was appointed to represent Hubert. A representative from the office did not return a phone call seeking comment.