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David Joseph Lenio of Kalispell, Montana, charged with 'criminal defamation' of Jews and threats against schoolchildren, was released from prison on his own recognizance on July 17th. Despite originally having bail set at $500,000, the judge agreed to waive the bail if Lenio complied with the conditions, which include living with his father in Michigan, refraining from using social media, and getting a mental health evaluation. Lenio faces a potential maximum of 20 years in prison if convicted on both felony charges.
Lenio's alleged Tweets included the following:
The original affidavit from Montana prosecutors stated, in part,
The Defendant, DAVID JOSEPH LENIO, on or between approximately February 12, 2015, and February 15, 2015, in Flathead County, Montana, with the purpose to cause another to perform or to omit the performance of any act, communicated to another, under circumstances that reasonably tend to produce a fear that it will be carried out, a threat to perform without lawful authority the following acts: inflict physical harm on the person threatened or any other person, or commit any felony, contrary to the provisions of Section 45-5-203(1), MCA, and punishable as provided by Section 45-5-203(3), MCA, by imprisonment in the State Prison for any term not to exceed ten years and/or by a maximum fine of $50,000. |
COUNT II: CRIMINAL DEFAMATION, a Felony . The Defendant, DAVID JOSEPH LENIO, on or between approximately February 12, 2015, and February 15, 2015, in Flathead County, Montana, with knowledge of its defamatory character, orally, in writing, or by any other means, including by electronic communication, communicated def amatory matter to a third person without the consent of the person defamed, contrary to Section 45-8-212, MCA, and punishable under Section 45-8-212(2), MCA, by imprisonment of not more than six months in the county jail and/or by a fine of not more than $500. Since this offense was committed because of the victim's race, creed, religion, color, or national origin, in addition to the punishment provided for in Section 45-8-212(2), MCA, this offense is punishable under Section 45-5-222, MCA, by a consecutive term of imprisonment of not less than two years or more than ten years.
The Daily Inter Lake reported on 7/17/15:
"In a hearing on Friday in Flathead District Court, defense attorney Brent Getty announced that he reached a deal with prosecutors on a conditional release. Lenio will be released to his father in Grand Rapids. His father arrived on a flight Friday and the two will drive back to Michigan. Prosecuting attorney Stacy Boman requested that Lenio be banned from using social media sites during his release. Getty objected, but District Judge Heidi J. Ulbricht accepted the condition. Lenio is prohibited from posting or using the sites although email is permitted. Other conditions of his release include a requirement for Lenio to get a mental health evaluation within 30 days and that he doesn't contact any witnesses.
The Flathead Beacon noted"He was initially held on $500,000 bail but will not have to pay that so long as he follows the conditions of his release. Lenio's trial is expected to begin Nov. 2." Prior to his original arrest in February, police searching Lenio's apartment and vehicle discovered two rifles, a pistol, ammo, marijuana, and jugs of urine. They contend that he was going to carry out his violent threats.
On June 30, The Flathead Beacon reported new details of Lenio's arrest and interrogation.:
"Lenio was then taken to the Kalispell Police Department where a representative with the Federal Bureau of Investigation began to question him about the tweets. During the first few minutes of the interview, Lenio told authorities that he was trying to "draw attention to a problem" and engage people in a discussion about homelessness. On June 29, Lenio's attorney, Brent Getty, argued that anything from that interrogation should be suppressed because Agent Steven Liss did not read Lenio his Miranda rights for seven minutes. During the hearing, the court viewed the first seven minutes of the interview and Agent Liss testified that he was simply trying to inform Lenio about why they had detained him before reading the Miranda rights. Liss said that Lenio kept interrupting the officers. "I was not trying to illicit an incriminating response (before I read him his rights), I was trying to inform him of why we were there," Liss said.
LibertyFight.com's June 8 article offers a comprehensive profile of Lenio and his exhaustive social media writings and youtube videos: Meet David Joseph Lenio, 9/11 Truther/Holocaust Denier being Prosecuted in Montana for 'Criminal Defamation' of Jews . [Excerpt:]
There is much more to this story than meets the eye. I wanted to look into Lenio's beliefs and positions, and that data is included on this page. Despite hysterical blogs claiming he's being prosecuting for simply denying to holocaust, there is more to it than that. [See criminal affidavit below]. A closer examination of Lenio, the accusations, and the charges is in order.After our article was published, one reader posted this comment:
Lenio appears to be a very inteligent young man who has studied the various problems plaguing this country and was determined to do something about them. His knowledge base is probably very similar to the people reading this article. He posts articles about 9/11 done by Israel, articles by the libertarian party, an article about Rand Paul, Reason Magazine, 9/11 documentary Loose Change, videos by Alex Jones, David Duke, links from Drudge, several articles by Alison Weir of "If Americans Knew," Links to Ryan Dawson, Architects and Engineers for 9/11 Truth, WhatReallyHappened.com, and many other links, stories and pundits who would be familiar to consumers of the alternative media. Lenio supported Ron Paul for President, advocates a 'FREE PALESTINE', 'End' to the 'Zionist Occupation,' and supports the 'Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions' movement. Lenio also liked writing and posting videos of his poetry and opposed Corporate Welfare, fiat currency, banker "bailouts, fraud, greed and usury."
Having met and spoken to David, I am sure that he made no viable threats to anyone and is, in reality, true defender of our liberties. David is not being treated well, he is locked down in solitary and facing 20 years imprisonment for a speech crime he did not commit. The "Israeli friendly" lawyer who conversed with Mr. Lenio on FB (thus: the intimidation charge) is also his accuser and claiming to be the victim, and all references to "school shootings" were made by Jon Hutson, who antagonized and provoked Mr. Lenio, then recorded the response. All of David's posts have been edited by law enforcement before being publicized. The defamation charge resulting from the poster Lenio sent to Hutson claiming that the "Holocaust is a fraud" makes David Lenio the first man in US history to be charged with "denying the Holocaust," which violates all of our liberties as lawful citizens and makes the Jews privileged citizens among us. The reason why David moved his legally owned firearms from his storage unit to his home was because the rental agreement was up that day. As a result of the discovery motion, David was given a CD - but no CD player, making it impossible to review the evidence against him and prepare a case for himself. Being from Michigan, means he has no visitors and no support in Montana. I encourage all good citizens to write David and let him know that our rights to free speech are defendable and the imperative to maintaining all of our individual rights. David says he will gladly answer all questions pertaining to his case to interested patriots and this good and sincere man needs our prayers and support. Written by Karl Gharst, a lawful citizen of the State of Montana
Please write: David Lenio FCDC 920 S. Main St. Kalispell, Mt. 59901
The affidavit from Montana prosecutors stated, in part,
As reported by Officer Colton Bagnoli and Detectives Cory Clarke and Scott Warnell of the Kalispell Police Department (KPD) in KPD Case Report No. 2015-3626, the facts establishing probable cause to believe that the Defendant has committed the foregoing offenses are as follows: 1. On February 15, 2015, Officer Colton Bagnoli received a dispatch regarding threats made on a social media service. Officer Bagnoli learned that an individual had been posting threats about killing kids on Twitter, a message service that broadcasts posted messages publicly on the internet and on cellular phones. Officers investigating the case learned that the messages were being sent by an individual identified as DAVID JOSEPH LENIO. The following were some of the messages sent out by LENIO:
AFFIDAVIT IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR LBAVE TO FILE AN INFORMATION Page 3 of 6
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Martin Hill is a Catholic paleoconservative and civil rights advocate. His work has been featured in the Los Angeles Daily News, San Gabriel Valley Tribune, The Orange County Register, KNBC4 TV Los Angeles, The Press Enterprise, LewRockwell.com, WhatReallyHappened.com, Infowars.com, PrisonPlanet.com, Economic Policy Journal, TargetLiberty.com, FreedomsPhoenix, Haaretz, TMZ, Veterans Today, Jonathan Turley blog, The Dr. Katherine Albrecht Show, National Motorists Association, AmericanFreePress.net, RomanCatholicReport.com, WorldNetDaily, HenryMakow.com, OverdriveOnline.com, Educate-Yourself.org, TexeMarrs.com, Dr. Kevin Barrett's Truth Jihad radio show, Strike-The-Root.com, Pasadena Weekly, ActivistPost.com, Los Angeles Catholic Lay Mission Newspaper, KFI AM 640, IamtheWitness.com, Redlands Daily Facts, SaveTheMales.ca, BlackBoxVoting, The Michael Badnarik Show, The Wayne Madsen Report, Devvy.com, Rense.com, FromTheTrenchesWorldReport.com, BeforeItsNews.com, The Contra Costa Times, Pasadena Star News, Silicon Valley Mercury News, Long Beach Press Telegram, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, L.A. Harbor Daily Breeze, CopBlock.org, DavidIcke.com, Whittier Daily News, KCLA FM Hollywood, The Fullerton Observer, Antiwar.com, From The Trenches World Report, and many others. Archives can be found at LibertyFight.com and DontWakeMeUp.Org.
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