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Man Indicted Over Alleged Threats To McCarthy

A Billings man pleaded not guilty Oct. 24 in federal court to making phone calls threatening to kill then-House Speaker Kevin McCarthy in February.

Richard Lee Rogers, 44, was indicted by a grand jury on Sept. 21 on one count of threatening to injure and murder a member of Congress in regards to his official duties, and one count of making harassing phone calls. Rogers is accused of making the threats on Feb. 3 from Shepherd, northeast of Billings.

The bulk of the allegations that led to his indictment are redacted, and the full indictment remains sealed.

In early February, McCarthy, a Republican representative from California, was in negotiations with President Joe Biden and other members of Congress on a debt ceiling deal.

Rogers made his first appearance Tuesday in federal court in Billings, where he entered a not guilty plea on both counts. He was granted release pending his next court appearance on conditions he surrender any passport he has, that he not possess a firearm or use alcohol, and that he must submit to random drug testing if required.

Rogers is at least the fourth Montanan this year arrested for threatening to kill a federal official or politician.

Earlier this month, a Hardin man was indicted on allegations he threatened to kill an FBI special agent. He also pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Late last month, a Billings man was charged with threatening to kill U.S. Sen. Jon Tester, a Montana Democrat.

In May, a Kalispell man pleaded guilty to one count of threatening to murder Tester stemming from phone calls he made in January. He was sentenced in August to 30 months in prison.

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