CHICAGO HEIGHTS, Ill. - The Chicago Heights man accused of making threats ahead of the inauguration is being held without bond.
Louis Capriotti, 45, was in court Thursday.
Prosecutors played a portion of one of the voicemails he left for a congress member from New Jersey, threatening to kill Democrats if President Joe Biden was sworn into office.
In the voicemail, Capriotti allegedly said if people "think that Joe Biden is going to put his hand on the Bible and walk into that f—ing White House on January 20, they’re sadly f—ing mistaken."
Capriotti identified himself as "a nine-year Marine, active duty" and allegedly said "we will surround the motherf—ing White House and we will kill any motherf—king Democrat that steps on the motherf—ing lawn."
Prosecutors said Capriotti has never served in the military.
In rejecting bail for Capriotti, U.S. Magistrate Judge Gabriel Fuentes said it was concerning Capriotti continued to make threats of violence to members of Congress even after the FBI told him a year ago to stop making threats.
"Threats hurt people," Fuentes said at the end of a nearly 90-minute hearing. "They terrorize people. They make people afraid. There’s an argument to be made that’s what they’re intended to do in the first place."
The call was made several days before a mob of President Donald Trump’s supporters smashed their way into the U.S. Capitol building. Five people, including a U.S. Capitol Police officer, died in the Jan. 6 assault on Washington. Dozens of people have been arrested in the attack, which temporarily halted congressional business to confirm Biden as president.
Capriotti has been charged with transmitting a threat, according to the U.S. attorney’s office in Chicago. The charge is punishable by a maximum sentence of five years in prison.
Capriotti’s lawyer, Jack Corfman, argued home detention would be sufficient to ensure the safety of the community, especially since Biden’s and Harris’ inaugurations passed and "went smoothly."
Assistant U.S. Attorney William Dunn disagreed, saying Capriotti has a long history of ignoring court orders and only needs a phone to continue his campaign of harassment.
Additionally, Capriotti has had several criminal cases in Chicago Heights. The most recent case was 13 years ago for violating an order of protection.
He has also been charged in the past with aggravated assault on a government employee and domestic battery.
The Associated Press and Sun-Times Media Wire contributed to this report.