By Kevin Rowson
ATLANTA (WXIA) - The FBI has a warning for people who use social network sites: Stop all the hatred. The FBI said they have seen an increase in online, social media based threats since the Presidential election and since the recent shootings in Newtown, Connecticut.
"The FBI, as well as law enforcement as a whole, takes them (online threats) seriously," said Mark Giuliano, Special Agent in Charge of FBI Atlanta. "They can easily evolve into federal criminal charges for those individuals making them."
The arrest of an Atlanta man is a perfect example of what the FBI is talking about and what they are doing about it.
Patrick McIntosh was arrested in Charleston, SC on December 7, 2012 and charged with receiving firearms while under indictment, and making a threat to the President of the United States.
McIntosh came to the attention of Atlanta police in November when they received a call from the owner of the Laughing Skull Comedy Club on Peachtree St. in Atlanta about a threat posted on a Facebook page linked to McIntosh. The threatening post read "I want to bring a gun into the laughing skull and shoot everyone."
Atlanta police turned the case over to the FBI who investigated McIntosh's Facebook page. According to a federal criminal complaint McIntosh used the name "Pand Atl" on Facebook.
The complaint said investigators found demeaning statements about homosexuals as well as claims of "White Power" on the Facebook page. "Another post made on the profile according to the complaint was "Negros in the White house. Think they own the country. Assignation the President!!!!!!! He needs to dye...his suit purples."
The complaint said McIntosh was residing at the In-Town Suites on Buford Highway in Norcross when he posted the threat to the President last August. It read "I wanna kill the president of the united states."