Owosso man accused of threatening politicians on social media

Owosso police worked with the FBI and U.S. Secret service on the investigation
Richard Maurer appears of arraignment by video feed in Shiawassee County District Court.
Richard Maurer appears of arraignment by video feed in Shiawassee County District Court.(source: The Argus Press, Owosso)
Published: Jan. 22, 2021 at 4:37 PM EST
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OWOSSO, Mich. (WJRT) - An Owosso man who protested at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 and the Michigan Capitol on Jan. 17 is facing an unrelated charge for allegedly posting threats on social media.

Richard Maurer, 65, is accused of threatening to shoot Democrats during President Joe Biden’s inauguration on Wednesday, according to court documents.

Authorities arrested Maurer on Tuesday -- the day before the inauguration. He appeared in Shiawassee County District Court on Friday for arraignment on one count of making a false report or threat of terrorism, which carries up to 20 years in prison if he is convicted.

Owosso Public Safety Director Kevin Lenkart said his investigators partnered with the FBI and U.S. Secret Service on the case.

Maurer was at the U.S. Capitol riots on Jan. 6 in Washington, D.C., but he has not been charged with any crimes and did not enter the Capitol building illegally. He posted often to Facebook asking for people to join the militia and said he would die for former President Donald Trump before the Jan. 6 riots.

Maurer also took part in last Sunday’s protest at the Michigan Capitol in Lansing, where nobody was charged with any crimes.

”Anytime you make a specific threat that you’re going to do harm to individuals on a federal level and the nation’s capitol, that’s alarming to us on a local level and on a federal level,” Lenkart said. “We take these very seriously, just the nature of the threat itself.”

The Owosso Police Department obtained a search warrant for Maurer’s social media accounts, where investigators allegedly found a number of threats against public officials. That led to his arraignment on Friday. The offense date is listed as Jan. 7 on court documents.

Maurer remained in custody at the Shiawassee County Jail after arraignment Friday.

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