Man charged in threat to Muslim candidate is due in court


In this March 23, 2019 image provided by the campaign of Qasim Rashid, state Senate candidate Qasim Rashid poses at the Stafford County Courthouse in Stafford, Va. A North Carolina man has been charged with posting an anonymous threat on social media to lynch Rashid, a Muslim-American candidate for a state Senate seat in Virginia. A warrant for the arrest of Joseph Cecil Vandevere, 52, of Black Mountain, was issued after his June 20 indictment, federal court records show. Federal authorities hadn’t yet arrested Vandevere as of Monday afternoon, July 1, 2019, according to Lia Bantavani, spokeswoman for the U.S. attorney’s office for the western district of North Carolina.
(Marion Meakem Photography/Quasim Rashid Campaign via AP)

ASHEVILLE, N.C. (AP) – A North Carolina man is in court to face a charge of tweeting a threat to lynch a Muslim-American candidate for a state Senate seat in Virginia.

FBI spokeswoman Shelley Lynch says 52-year-old Joseph Cecil Vandevere turned himself in to agents Wednesday at the federal courthouse in Asheville, North Carolina.

He was expected to make his initial court appearance later Wednesday after being indicted on a count of interstate communication of a threat to injure a person.

Virginia state Senate candidate Qasim Rashid posted a screenshot of the threatening tweet in March 2018 and reported it to the FBI. The tweet included a picture of a lynching and read, “VIEW YOUR DESTINY.”

Twitter suspended the account and the FBI allegedly identified Vandevere as the tweeter.

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