Jacksonville, Florida – U.S. District Judge Brian J. Davis has sentenced Curtis Brown (35, Indian River) to one year and three months in federal prison, to follow the completion of his 30-year state sentence, for threatening to kill a federal judge and his family, and mailing a threatening communication. Brown had pleaded guilty on December 27, 2022.
According to court documents, Brown sent a letter to a United States district judge threatening to kill him or his family. At the time, Brown was in the Florida State Prison in Raiford serving a state sentence. The envelope containing the letter was stamped with the phrase “Mailed From A State Correctional Institution.” The return address included Brown’s name, inmate number, and the address of the prison. The letter was addressed to the judge’s chambers and stated that it was sent in retaliation for the judge’s refusal to grant Brown’s requested relief. The letter stated that Brown would use his “federally funded stimulus” to hire someone to shoot the judge. Brown also said that if he could not get to the judge in time, he would settle for his “child, loved one, etc.” In a postscript in the letter, Brown further threatened the judge that if the judge told anyone about the letter, it would get worse for the judge. Brown’s name and inmate number were also included in the letter.
On December 3, 2021, upon receiving the letter, employees in the clerk’s office at the United States Courthouse in Tallahassee notified the United States Marshals Service (USMS). The USMS notified a Florida State Prison’s Security Threat Intelligence Officer about the letter. Upon further investigation, the handwriting on the letter was a presumptive match for Brown.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation then began investigating Brown and the letter. Agents discovered that Brown had been engaged in civil litigation in the Northern District of Florida. In July and August 2021, Brown filed an emergency motion for a preliminary injunction and an emergency civil rights complaint about his confinement that were referred to a magistrate judge. Following the referral, several proceedings occurred in which the magistrate judge sought to verify that Brown was the same individual that had previously filed a complaint or lawsuit about his confinement as Brown had not indicated in his filings that he had done so. Throughout the proceedings, Brown maintained that he had not filed a previous federal complaint or lawsuit. However, the magistrate judge concluded that Brown was being dishonest with the court. On November 4, 2021, the magistrate judge issued a report and recommended the dismissal of Brown’s case with prejudice considering “Brown’s pattern of perjury and willful abuse of the judicial process.” On November 19, 2021, the district court judge ordered the case dismissed with prejudice based on Brown’s “pattern of abuse of the judicial process” as an “appropriate sanction for [Brown’s] bad faith.” The judgment was entered on the same day. On November 30, 2021, Brown sent his letter in retaliation for the judge dismissing his case.
This case was investigated by the United States Marshals Service and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Kirwinn Mike and Ashley Washington.