Man sentenced for threatening NPR hosts


John Crosby of Maine was arrested in January for sending threats to two NPR hosts and in April pleaded guilty to charges of sending threatening communications and possession of a firearm by a felon. Now he’s gotten his sentence from a federal judge in Portland.

While in theory Crosby could have faced up to 10 years in prison, the Portland Press-Herald said US District Judge George Singal gave the man the maximum penalty under federal sentencing guidelines. That was 46 months in prison. The judge ordered that Crosby be sent to a facility that offers mental health treatment. He’ll also have three years of supervised release after he serves his prison time.

Crosby e-mailed a threat January 17th to “All Things Considered” host Melissa Block through NPR’s website, used anti-Semitic slurs and listed his name as “I Kill MellissaBlock.”

Among the emails he penned: “I am going to kill Melissa Block. She is a commissar who is helping to destroy me to use me as a human sacrifice. She will be raped, beaten, tortured, and murdered very soon.”

Another e-mail threatened Guy Raz, weekend host of “All Things Considered”: “100 years ago a k-ke like him would have been hanging from a tree for disrespecting my privacy like that. If I can make it to DC, I will try to find [him]  and take care of business.”

Those e-mails and 29 others with threats and slurs were sent between January 23rd and 26th were traced to IP addresses at the University of Southern Maine. The school then traced the address to Crosby who graduated there in 2009 with an electrical engineering degree. FBI agents arrested Crosby January 26th at a cafe in the university’s library.

In his court appearance Friday Crosby denied being a bigot or misogynist. He had been upset by NPR’s coverage of the economy and told the court he dealt with his anger and stress “in an odd way” in explaining his actions. “For that, I’m sorry,” he said.