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Second man charged for threatening state lawmaker during gun debate

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DENVER -- FOX31 Denver is first to report that another man is facing criminal charges for threatening a state lawmaker during this month's debate over gun control proposals, three of which were signed into law last week.

David A. Cassidy of Denver was charged last week with one count of attempt to influence an public servant, a felony, and one count of harassment, a misdemeanor, both stemming from a phone call he made to state Sen. Andy Kerr, D-Lakewood.

Watch more on this story on FOX31 Denver news at 5 p.m.

On the night of Monday, March 4, as Senate lawmakers heard public testimony on seven gun control bills as opponents packed the Capitol and blared their horns, Kerr returned home and listened to a message from Cassidy, 59, on his cell phone.

"You and the rest of the communist Democrats down there are gonna regret what you're doing," Cassidy said. "Either by ballots or by bullets, we are going to get you out of office."

Kerr, one of several lawmakers considered swing votes in the Senate when it heard the package of gun control bills earlier this month, was taken aback by the threat.

"The fact that I was in my house, that I was listening to it while my kids were running around, that really unnerved me," Kerr told FOX31 Denver. "This is the first time in my life someone has put a threat out there like that."

Two weeks earlier, Denver police had arrested Franklin Sain for sending a week's worth of violent, threatening and racist emails to Rep. Rhonda Fields, D-Aurora, the sponsor of the two most controversial gun control measures: the ban on high-capacity magazines and a measure calling for universal background checks.

Kerr, who eventually voted in favor of the both those bills, got a second voicemail from Cassidy a second time after police went to his home and, according to a report, confirmed that he left the threatening voicemail.

"Cassidy said he was trying to convey to Sen. Kerr that if the proposed House and Senate bills regarding gun legislation were passed into law, civil unrest could occur," the police report states. "He added when he said 'by bullets', he meant other persons unknown to him may use force to remove Sen. Kerr from office. Cassidy said he never intended for Sen. Kerr to believe he wished to personally remove him from office by using a gun."

In the second voicemail, which lasted nearly four minutes, Cassidy informs Kerr that he got a "little visit from the constabulary" and attempted to explain, as he did with police, that he wasn't meaning to sound threatening.

"It wasn't a threat, I was trying to warn you," Cassidy said. "Our country has a history of revolution and it could come down to that and you may be pushing it to that."

Cassidy, who bonded out of jail, was informed of the charges against him on Tuesday and awaits a preliminary hearing on April 15.

Cassidy was also cited for assault after grabbing and threatening a man who was removing campaign signs from his southwest Denver neighborhood last fall; and he was involved in a reported domestic disturbance last October, according to police reports.

When a dispatcher responding the disturbance asked Cassidy's brother, Robert, if there were weapons within the home, he said there were "guns and knives everywhere," according to the report.

Officers who visited Cassidy's home on March 8, four days after his first phone call to Kerr, also noticed a "Rocky Mountain Gun Owners" bumper sticker on his truck.