Texting threats of gun violence

Text messages originating from New Jersey and North Carolina threatened harm to the family of a Burke County resident.

Burke County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Keelan Moore responded to a call about suspicious activity May 14. Upon arrival, a resident who lives on Sweetwater Road shared text messages with the officer that he had received from two different numbers. An unknown person sent him a text that stated, “You have been talking to one of my girls who offered you her service and you just wasted her time. I have set a fee for you to pay. If you don’t pay a couple of your family members will lose their lives.”

The unknown person then requested $3,000.

According to the official incident report, the unknown person knew details about the recipient, including his parents’ previous address in Ohio and names of relatives. The text messages also included a photo of three unknown subjects pointing three handguns at the camera.

Moore instructed the Burke County resident to block the phone numbers, contact the relatives who were mentioned, and to contact local law enforcement in Ohio. Lieutenant Kenneth McKenzie and Investigator Allen Crispin were informed about the incident.

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