Crime & Courts

Magistrate orders continued detention for Alaska man accused of threats against US senators

A federal magistrate Friday ordered the continued detention of a man who has been accused of leaving threatening messages against Alaska’s U.S. senators, a spokesperson for the Alaska U.S. attorney’s office said.

Lisa Houghton, by email, said Jay Allen Johnson was “ordered by the court to continue to be detained. In considering all of the information presented, the court did not find any condition that will sufficiently protect the community if Mr. Johnson is released.”

Jason Weiner, an attorney for Johnson, said he was “extremely upset and frustrated” by the decision. He said the defense proposed bail, third-party custodianship and electronic monitoring, “and the court still did not grant it.”

Weiner also said he was concerned about Johnson’s health.

A grand jury earlier this week indicted Johnson on counts including threatening to murder a U.S. official, felon in possession of firearms, threatening to destroy property by fire and threatening interstate communications.

An arraignment on the indictment was scheduled for Monday. The indictment was posted to an online federal courts record system late Friday afternoon.

Johnson, of Delta Junction, has been accused of making threats against U.S. Sens. Lisa Murkowski and Dan Sullivan.

Johnson, at an earlier hearing, said he is “a senior citizen and I am highly disabled and I will not be carrying out any of these threats.”

“I just apologize to everybody,” he said later.

His wife has said her husband was in pain after recent surgeries and that he “gets very angry listening to politics on the news.”

Sponsored