Man Pleads Guilty To Sending Text Messages Threatening To Kill Jews


DeLand, FL - A DeLand man pled guilty to a felony charge of knowingly and intentionally transmitting a threatening communication in interstate commerce, making it a federal crime. The U.S. Marshall Service, with the assistance of the Volusia County Sheriff's Office, arrested 26-year-old Hanson Richard Larkin.

The U.S. Attorney's Office reports that Larkin was turned in by an online acquaintance in August of 2019. That person, who lives in Miami-Dade County, said they had been texting, phoning and messaging through social media since 2017. That person said that Larkin talked about his hatred of Jews on a number of occasions.

Earlier this year, Larkin told the person in Miami-Dade that he wanted to come to visit and meet the individual. According to the U.S. Attorney's Office, that person repeatedly urged him not to come because he did not want to meet with him. Larkin disregarded the request and on August 24, 2019, he traveled from DeLand to Miami by train. On the 25th, Larkin texted the individual saying that he was at his house.

Larkin then sent the following series of threatening text messages designed to coerce this individual to meet with him: (a) “…I bought a gun with my first paycheck If I don’t meet you I will be forced to use it.” (b) “I told you how much I hate Jews right?” (c) “If meeting me for five seconds is not worth the lives of multiple Jews than I have no other option.” (d) “There’s a Chabad near me. And Amtrak has no security for the weapon. Don’t make me make a choice they'll regret.” (e) “Ok so then we meet and no dead Jews?” 

The person in Miami-Dade took the threats seriously due to the comments Larkin had made in the past and contacted local law enforcement. The person never met with Larkin. Larkin traveled back to DeLand on August 26 and was eventually arrested on September 6.

Larkin is scheduled for sentencing on January 8, 2020, in U.S. District Court. He faces a possible maximum sentence of five years in prison.