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A man was arrested on Tuesday, April 20, 2022 and charged with making threats against Merriam-Webster, Inc according to a release from the Department of Justice. California-based Jeremy David Hanson, was charged in federal court in Springfield, Mass. after allgedly threatening to bomb the offices over definitions of terms like female.
Hanson, 34, was charged with one count of interstate communication of threats to commit violence. He will appear in court on April 29, 2022.
Hanson alleged online threats were sent in October. In them, he suggested hunting down and shooting the person who wrote the definition for female, and using the "Contact Us" page allegedly wrote "It would be poetic justice to have someone storm your offices and shoot up the place, leaving none of you commies alive."
As a result of the threats, which the company reported to the F.B.I., Merriam-Webster closed its offices for five days.
His mother told the New York Times that Hansom had autism and is "fixated on transgender issues."
"Hate-filled threats and intimidations have no place in our society," United States Attorney Rachael S. Rollins, said in a statement. "We believe Hanson sent a multitude of anonymous threatening and despicable messages related to the LGBTQ community that were intended to evoke fear and division. My office and our law enforcement partners will not tolerate threats against members of our communities, no matter what corner of the internet they're sent from. Perpetrators will be identified, arrested, and held accountable in federal court."