New York Man Charged After Threatening Public official on Facebook Messenger

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Oakfield, N.Y. – Erie County District Attorney John J. Flynn announces that 49-year-old Thomas E. Netter of Oakfield, N.Y. was arraigned this morning before Buffalo City Court Judge Shannon M. Heneghan on one count of Aggravated Harassment in the Second Degree (Class “A” misdemeanor).

It is alleged that on January 29, 2021, at approximately 12:21 p.m., the defendant sent a threatening message via Facebook messenger to the Erie County Executive. The alleged threat, which placed the victim in reasonable fear of their physical safety, was related to COVID-19 mandates.

Netter is scheduled to return on Friday, October 1, 2021 at 9:30 a.m. for further proceedings. He was released on his own recognizance as the charge is non-qualifying for bail.

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If convicted of the charge, Netter faces a maximum of one year in jail.


Judge Heneghan issued a No Contact Order of Protection on behalf of the victim.

DA Flynn commends the Erie County Sheriff’s Office for their work in the investigation.  

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Gary M. Ertel of the Special Investigations and Prosecutions Unit.