Texas Anti-Vaxxer Charged With Threatening Well-Known Doc

He's accused of referencing his '12-gauge' in note to Dr. Leana Wen
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 13, 2021 3:31 AM CDT
Texas Anti-Vaxxer Allegedly Threatens Well-Known Doctor
In this Aug. 14, 2012 file photo, Dr. Leana Wen stands in the emergency department at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston, during her medical residency.   (AP Photo/Steven Senne)

(Newser) – Dr. Leana Wen, formerly the Baltimore health commissioner and president of Planned Parenthood and currently a prominent voice speaking out on health policy and public health during the coronavirus pandemic, is a big proponent of the COVID-19 vaccine. Texas' 51-year-old Scott Eli Harris is not—and authorities say he threatened Wen over the issue in July. "Never going to take your wonder drug. My 12-gauge promises I won't," Harris is accused of writing in a text message to Wen, WBAL-TV reports. He also allegedly threatened to shoot Wen, and has been indicted on federal charges of having "knowingly and willingly transmitted in interstate commerce a threat to injure the person of another," NBC News reports.

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Authorities say Wen's gender and her history as a Chinese immigrant also played a role in the threatening messages. "I'm a 5th general US Army veteran and a sniper.. I can't wait for the shooting to start.. I hope you are ready," he allegedly wrote, alongside expletives, ethnic slurs, and other offensive language. "Where's your [expletive] office?" The military status he claimed has not been verified. "We take seriously threats and intimidation, and this charge makes clear that such conduct will be prosecuted federally," a Maryland US attorney says. Harris faces up to five years behind bars and a fine of up to $250,000, CBS Baltimore reports. (Read more COVID-19 stories.)

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