YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Youngstown City Council will be having virtual meetings after two council members received threatening emails last week, which has put the entire council on alert.
Wednesday’s regular council meeting will be held virtually in an effort to make sure all council members are safe.
Monday night’s finance committee meeting was held virtually to keep the seven-member council from all gathering in one place.
Last Thursday, City Council President Tom Hetrick and First Ward Councilman Julius Oliver received a threatening email.
The email itself read, in part, “Today I will be taking my AR-15 and hunting down as many council members I possibly can. Tom Hetrick…I think I’ll start with him. Or maybe I’ll start with Basia Adamczak…Who knows what I’ll do. Either way, prepare yourselves.”
On Tuesday, we talked with Fifth Ward Councilwoman Lauren McNally about the email.
“Yeah, up until 5 minutes ago when you got off the phone with the police chief, I’ve been pretty on edge, pretty anxious. Felt I really needed to make sure I was not only keeping myself and my family safe but the community safe if I was out at any events over the weekend or at our finance committee meeting last night,” she said.
Youngstown Police Chief Carl Davis said the FBI has joined the investigation.
“Officers are making periodic checks on the homes of all council persons. A photo of the suspect has been circulated to all security personnel who work city hall, the municipal courthouse and police lobby,” Davis said.
Oliver said he’s not really worried but realizes that this is how things get started.
It’s not clear at this point how long council will continue to meet virtually. Decisions will likely be made on a meeting-by-meeting basis.