A Texas woman has been charged with threatening to kill the federal judge who presided over a dispute between former President Donald Trump and the Justice Department over records seized in an FBI raid on Trump’s home last month.
An FBI special agent said Tiffani Shea Gish of Houston left three threatening voicemails on the chamber phone of US District Court Judge Aileen Cannon in South Florida, according to a criminal complaint filed Tuesday.
Gish identified herself as fictional Russian agent Evelyn Salt and claimed to be “in charge of nuclear power” for the government, a federal agent and “Trump’s hitman” who had a “license to kill,” according to transcribed excerpts of the calls included in the complaint.
Gish’s alias is the same name as the protagonist played by Angelina Jolie in the 2010 action film Salt.
A detailed ownership list of documents and other items seized from former US President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate will be viewed after the US District Court for the Southern District of Florida in West Palm Beach, Florida, opened to the public. September 2, 2022.
Jim Castle | Reuters
Trump is “marked for assassination, and so are you,” Gish said in the expletive-filled messages showing the complaint. “You’re full of shit and I’m going to have you fucking shoot yourself. I’ve already ordered snipers and a bomb to your damn house,” Gish allegedly told the voicemails, all of which were created on September 1.
When agents arrived at her home on Sept. 4, Gish initially only spoke through a balcony window, but eventually invited the agents in and spoke to them for about 45 minutes, the complaint says. Gish said in that interview that she left the voicemails from her cell phone and also confirmed that according to the complaint, she owned a Facebook account with posts using the language of the voicemails.
Gish was charged in the US District Court in Houston with one count of influencing a federal official through threats and one count of interstate communications involving threats to kidnap or injure him.
Judge Peter Bray on Friday ordered Gish held in custody, saying she “appears to be suffering from severe mental impairment with symptoms including paranoia and delusions”.
A federal prosecutor had asked for a competency check on Gish, writing in a court filing that her “past conduct demonstrates delusional behavior in claiming to be a CIA agent, a Navy SEAL, an Army Ranger, and someone involved in nuclear weapons or war.” familiar, while at the same time shuffling threats against officials like former President Donald Trump or former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
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In March, a US intelligence agent called Gish’s mother, who “claimed that her daughter had severe bipolar disorder and was borderline schizophrenic,” according to court filings.
“While she did not feel that Gish would physically harm the former president, she was still afraid of her daughter and refused to see her in person for fear she would be attacked,” prosecutors wrote.
A competency hearing is scheduled for Tuesday. Gish’s attorneys did not immediately respond to CNBC’s request for comment.
Gish left the voicemails for Cannon, a Trump appointee, as the former president’s attorneys and the DOJ argued over whether the judge should appoint a special master to review the thousands of government records released from Trump’s home last month Mar-a- Lago in Florida were confiscated. This court-appointed independent third party would examine the seized records, many of which bore high-level classifications of non-disclosure, for personal belongings and potentially privileged material.
Cannon approved the appointment of a special champion last week, earning a win for Trump. The DOJ, which argued that a special master was unnecessary and could harm the government’s national security interests, is appealing Cannon’s verdict. The department also wants Cannon to suspend her related order to prevent the government from further reviewing classified documents stolen in the raid.
Trump’s lawyers asked Cannon on Monday to deny that request.