Sandy Hook denier pleads not guilty in death threats to Leonard Pozner victim’s Father
A Florida woman accused of sending death threats to the father of a boy killed in the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting appeared Monday in a federal courtroom in Broward County and was ordered not to visit websites related to conspiracy theories and government hoaxes.
Lucy Richards, 57, of Tampa, was indicted in early December on four counts of transmitting threats across state boundaries. Each count carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison on conviction. Richards is accused of leaving threatening voice mails for Leonard Pozner, father of 6-year-old Noah Pozner, one of 20 children and six adults killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School the morning of Dec.14, 2012.
According to the indictment, Richards is accused of leaving messages sayingn “Look behind you, it is death,” and, “Death is coming to you real soon and there’s nothing you can do about it.”
Sandy Hook denier arrested after death threats made to parent of victim
Dozens of websites extol Sandy Hook hoax theories. A virulent online community believes the shooting never existed, that the tears parents shed for their children were fake and that the shooting was staged to garner support for increased gun control.
Richards came across some of these websites, Assistant U.S. Attorney Karen Gilbert said in court Monday, and the anger Richards felt over what she read motivated her to threaten Leonard Pozner.
Richards sat before U.S. Magistrate Barry S. Seltzer and answered the judge’s questions in a hushed, soft voice.
The woman did not have an attorney at the start of arraignment. When the judge determined Richards was indigent, he assigned a public defender. Richards told the judge she did not have any bank accounts, had been unemployed since 2004 and receives Social Security assistance.
Richards’ lawyer, Assistant Federal Public Defender Michael Spivack, told the judge she pleaded not guilty.
Seltzer released Richards but issued a personal surety bond of $25,000 should she violate the terms of her release.
Seltzer ordered Richards to have no contact with anyone affected by the Sandy Hook Elementary school shooting.
Sandy Hook dad fights lies about murdered son
Gilbert also requested that Richards be barred from accessing websites about government hoaxes and conspiracy theories. The defendant told the judge she does not own a computer and has Internet access on her phone only. The prosecution will provide Richards with a list of websites she is not allowed to access.
The judge, prosecutor and defense attorney agreed that Richards’ pretrial officer would also receive a list of the banned websites to enforce this condition of her release.
The judge also limited Richards’ travel to within the state of Florida and to seek mental health treatment if recommended by the pretrial services office.
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