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Man accused of threatening to kill Jayapal outside her home

A man has been arrested for threatening to kill Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.), prosecutors in Washington state confirmed to The Hill. 

The man was arrested near the Seattle home of the lawmaker, who leads the Congressional Progressive Caucus.

A probable cause certificate states that officers responding to a disturbance spotted the suspect, Brett Forsell, standing in the street with his hands in the air and a handgun holstered on his waist on Saturday night. 

An officer said in the statement that a neighbor told them that they heard the suspect yell, “Go back to India, I’m going to kill you” and saw Forsell’s vehicle drive by Jayapal’s residence about three times while he yelled profanities. 

Forsell said after he was read his Miranda rights that he knew Jayapal, who is Indian, lived at the residence and wanted to pitch a tent on the property, according to the probable cause statement. 

The King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office said in a statement that a judge set bail for Forsell at $500,000, similar to other cases for armed threats to kill and hate crimes. The judge denied the office’s request for a criminal harassment protection order for Jayapal. 

The statement said that the office expects documents for charges to be sent on Wednesday afternoon, and Forsell is expected to remain in jail. The Seattle Police Department is continuing to investigate the incident. 

The department deferred comment to the prosecuting attorney’s office. 

The office said this is the only case involving Forsell that it has been sent. 

Jayapal’s office confirmed in a statement that an incident occurred at her home in Seattle. The statement said Jayapal and her family are safe and that she appreciates the well wishes she has received from constituents. 

“She is very grateful for the swift and professional response from the Seattle Police Department, the US Capitol Police, and the FBI investigators who are working together diligently on the investigation, and ensuring that she and her family stay safe,” the statement reads. “Because this is an ongoing investigation, she will not be commenting further at this time.”

Tags hate crime Pramila Jayapal Pramila Jayapal

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