The United States Secret Service is looking into comments made by Missouri State Sen. Maria Chappelle-Nadal after she wrote on Facebook that she hoped President Donald Trump would be assassinated.
“The St. Louis Field Office of the Secret Service is looking into the comments,” Secret Service spokesman Joseph A. Casey said in an email to The Epoch Times.
“The Secret Service investigates all threats against the president, vice president, and other protectees, whether they be direct, implied, or comments in passing,” Casey said.
Chappelle-Nadal anticipated the investigation, making the comment in tandem with an acknowledgement that the Secret Service would look into it.
The state senator made the statement in a Facebook conversation with another commentator named Christopher Gagné.
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch obtained a screenshot of the now deleted conversation.
According to a screenshot, Gagné discussed having a cousin on Trump’s Secret Service detail, and finished by saying: “Damn, now I’ll probably get a visit from the Secret Service smdh [shaking my damn head].”
Chappelle-Nadal replied: “No. I will. I hope Trump is assassinated!”
Special Agent Kristina Schmidt, with the St. Louis field office, referred questions from The Epoch Times to headquarters, but in an earlier interview with the Post-Dispatch said ,”hypothetically” that agents investigating a threat try to “determine intent, to determine if there was a violation of federal law. If there is, then we refer it to the U.S. attorney.”
“Our primary goal is to determine if there is intent and meaning behind it,” Schmidt said.
Chappelle-Nadal has since apologized for the comment and reversed herself, telling CNN affiliate KMOV , “I don’t want to see anyone assassinated.”
“Someone wrote a statement on my Facebook and I responded with something that shouldn’t have been put up there,” she said.
The senator now faces a backlash from other lawmakers in the state calling for her resignation, including fellow Democrats.
“I condemn it. It’s outrageous. And she should resign,” said Democrat Claire McCaskill in a statement.
The chairman of the Missouri Democratic Party, Stephen Webber, also said Chappelle-Nadal should resign.
“State Senator Chappelle-Nadal’s comments are indefensible. All sides need to agree that there is no room for suggestions of political violence in America—and the Missouri Democratic Party will absolutely not tolerate calls for the assassination of the president,” Webber told CNN.
Republicans have also called on Chappelle-Nadal to resign.
Chappelle-Nadal posted her comment on Thursday morning, Aug. 17, and has staunchly rejected all calls for her resignation.
The senator has instead used those calls to rally support, directing people to a website that asks them to provide their name, phone number, zip code, and a message.
The website is registered anonymously using a service that keeps the identity of the site owner out of the ICANN WHOIS domain name registry.
The short introduction on the website is written in the voice of constituents who support Chappelle-Nadal and are frustrated “with our current political landscape.”
It includes a brief statement from Chappelle-Nadal that says her comments could have been reframed and call on her not to resign.