|Re: 12/12/2014 - CT Post: Florida man charged with sending threats to Connecticut|
Florida man charged with sending threats to Connecticut
Michael P. Mayko
Published 6:49 pm, Wednesday, November 12, 2014
All Garrett Santillo needed was paper, a pen, an envelope and a stamp.
He may have authored a long term in the federal pen.
During a month-long period last summer, Santillo allegedly mailed 15 letters threatening to kill or injure people such as Gov. Dannel P. Malloy, U.S. District Judges Robert N. Chatignyand Janet Bond Arterton and forensic scientist Henry Lee, according to a federal court indictment.
Other letters were sent to Janet Peckinpaugh, a popular former TV news anchor; convicted ex-Gov. John G. Rowland and Lisa Wilson Foley, the convicted former Republican Congressional candidate, court documents indicate.
Santillo, 35, formerly of Hollywood, Fla. pleaded not guilty to nine charges Wednesday before U.S. Magistrate Judge Donna F. Martinez in Hartford. He is being detained without bond and undergoing mental health treatment.
Santillo admitted writing the letters and identified his handwriting to federal investigators, according to court documents. Investigators said they found an unmailed letter addressed to President Barack Obama, threatening to kill him.
Santillo has 2003 and 2008 federal convictions for sending threatening letters and a 2010 violation of his federally supervised release for sending a similar letter. In this case, he was arrested on Sept. 29 in his Florida home after being shot through a window with a stun gun when he refused to open the door and threatened to commit suicide, authorities said.
The first letter in this case was allegedly mailed on July 11 from Miami to Chatigny's home address. It demanded Chatigny vindicate James Van de Velde, the former Yale Universitylecturer who received a cash settlement from both Yale and New Haven after suing them for wrongfully singling him out in the still-unsolved 1998 murder of Suzanne Jovin. Van de Velde never was charged with the crime.
"You must tell Mr. Van de Velde you are issuing a written paper saying you are granting what he wanted you to do regarding this or we will most definitely kill you," the letter read "You(r) home addressess in Connecticut are public information and if you mask your identity by name or appearance, we can still track you to wherever you go and will kill you if you don't follow what this letter instructs."
A July 21 demanded that Lee solve the 1996 Colorado murder of 6-year-old JonBenet Ramsey, as well as others he investigated or "you and others you know will be killed by ways no FBI or even God will be able to STOP!"
Peckinpaugh was told to donate $8 million of her sexual harassment settlement to charity or she would be killed..
Lisa Wilson Foley and her husband, Brian, were told "to accept five full years in Federal prison" while former Gov. Rowland was told to take "six full years" for their roles in the recent federal elections corruption case that led to their convictions. Failure to do so would result in their deaths and the murder of Arterton, the presiding judge, according to July 29 letters allegedly sent to them.
An Aug. 16 letter to Malloy threatened his death for signing the law that revoked the death penalty, according to court documents . The same letter threatened to kill Superior CourtJudge Jon Blue for not "insisting the death penalty be carried out" in the Cheshire home-invasion murders.
Santillo was indicted on nine charges by a federal grand jury. These include two counts of impeding, intimidating, influencing or retailing against a federal judge, each of which carries a maxim 10 year prison. The remaining seven charges involve mailing threatening letters, each also carrying a 10-year term.
The case is assigned to U.S. District Judge Alvin W. Thompson and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Tracy Lee Dayton. It was investigated by the U.S. Marshal's Service, the FBI, U.S. Postal Inspection Service, Connecticut State Police, Yale University Police and Broward County Sheriff's Department.