(PresidentialWire.com)- Last week a judge sentenced a San Antonio Texas man to fifteen months in prison and a $1,000 fine for perpetrating a COVID-related threat on Facebook last year.
On April 5, 2020, Christopher Charles Perez, 40, posted on Facebook that he had paid a COVID-infected man to lick items at San Antonio grocery stores in order to spread coronavirus to others. The same day he posted it, a screenshot of the threat was submitted online as a tip to the Southwest Texas Fusion Center which then contacted the San Antonio field office of the FBI.
Two days later Perez was arrested by the FBI and charged with a felony for violating 18 U.S.C. § 1038, which criminalizes false information and hoaxes related to weapons of mass destruction.
After investigating the matter, the Trump Justice Department released a statement saying that Perez’s threat was false and he didn’t actually pay anyone to spread coronavirus at grocery stores.
Perez admitted to the FBI that his Facebook post was a hoax, telling them that he posted it because he thought too many people were still going out grocery shopping so he wanted to scare them into staying home in order to keep people safe from the COVID virus.
What an idiot. He should’ve been charged with felony stupidity too.
But the fact that he was peddling a hoax doesn’t matter. Perez was found guilty of two counts of conveying false information and hoaxes related to biological weapons.
After the sentencing, Christopher Combs, the FBI Special Agent in Charge in San Antonio said in a statement that Perez’s Facebook post was “knowingly designed to spread fear and panic.” Combs said that the sentencing “illustrates the seriousness of this crime.”
In his April 2020 Facebook post, Perez claimed that his “homeboy’s cousin” had COVID-19 and he and his “homeboy” paid him to lick “everything for the past 2 days.” Perez said that unlike those who film themselves licking groceries and posting it online, they told the guy not to film himself. Then he added, “YOU’VE BEEN WARNED!!!”
It takes a special kind of stupid to think he could do that and not face any consequences. It’s his dumb luck that putting that post on Facebook violated federal law.