As President Barack Obama and his family prepared for their holiday trip to Hawaii, a woman accused of telling the Secret Service that she would "blow away" First Lady Michelle Obama was arrested.
According to the Associated Press, the woman arrested for threats to First Lady Michelle Obama was 35 year old Kristy Lee Roshia. She was arrested two miles from the Kailua home where the Obama family planned to stay during a Christmas visit later this week.
Roshia was charged with threatening a family member of the president and assaulting a federal agent.
Apparently, the woman has a long history of making threatening and rambling telephone calls to the Secret Service office in Boston, according to an affidavit filed in federal court.
According to a Secret Service affidavit, Roshia called the Secret Service's Boston office last month and told a receptionist, "I will kill Michelle Obama".
The document states that during the same call she said she would would "blow away" Michelle Obama.
Roshia also was charged with lunging at a Secret Service agent, striking him in the arms and face during her arrest.
According to the affidavit, Roshia said she knew where Obama would be staying in Hawaii, and the reason she had traveled to Hawaii in September was "to protect Obama."
The Boston Herald reports, how the job of protecting presidents came about. It started in 1894 with Grover Cleveland, who was guarded part time. That role expanded after the assassination of William McKinley in 1901, and it became a crime to threaten the president in 1917. Today, guarding the president and other top officials accounts for most of the Secret Service's budget, which totals about $1.4 billion per year and continues to grow.
In 2007, Roshia pleaded guilty to threatening a Secret Service special agent at the service's headquarters in the nation's capitol. She was sentenced to 180 days in jail, followed by one year of supervised probation and two years of unsupervised probation.
A judge also ordered Roshia to undergo a mental health examination and treatment.
- Woman allegedly menaced first lady (Honolulu Advertiser)
- First lady threats lead to arrest (Star Bulletin)
- Secret Service strained as leaders face more threats (Boston Herald)
- Threatening the president is no joke, even when it is one (New York Press)