A man is accused of sending a Twitter threat to lynch a Muslim state senate candidate. He’s now been charged

Posted at 3:27 AM, Jul 03, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-03 12:34:05-04

Last year, a Twitter user threatened Muslim lawyer and now Virginia Senate candidate Qasim Rashid with the words “view your destiny” attached to a picture of a lynching.

Now, the man who went by “DaDUTCHMAN5” on the social media platform has been charged with issuing a threat via interstate commerce. The charge against him carries a maximum prison sentence of five years.

In an indictment filed in the US District Court for the Western District of North Carolina, the man is identified as Joseph Cecil Vandevere. He turned himself in to the FBI Wednesday morning, according to Lia Bantavani, spokeswoman for the US Attorney’s Office for the Western District of North Carolina.

Court records do not list an attorney for Vandevere.

After receiving the tweet, Rashid wrote to Twitter in March 2018 with a screenshot of the message.

“Hey @Twitter this white supremacist @DaDUTCHMAN5 is threatening me with lynching b/c I am Muslim,” he said. “Please tell me this violates your terms & conditions?”

This week, Rashid said on Twitter “if extremists think threatening to kill me will slow me down — they’re both violent and ignorant.”

“My faith teaches me to respond to injustice (with) justice. We will march forward in service to all humanity,” he said. “And we’re just getting started.”