A federal judge rejected Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene's request to have an upstate New York man convicted of sending her threatening voicemails pay $65,000 for her Georgia home's security fence.
Joseph Morelli pleaded guilty in February to threatening the Republican member of Congress in several calls in 2022 to her Washington, D.C., office. He was sentenced to three months in prison in August. The Endicott, New York, resident said “I’m gonna harm you” in one voicemail and threatened to “pay someone 500 bucks to take a baseball bat and crack your skull,” in another, prosecutors said.
Greene sought restitution of $65,257 for the construction of the fence and $1,375 for reconfiguring existing security cameras at her Georgia home. Lawyers for the government argued that Greene's security expenses stemmed from the threats, according to court papers.
U.S. District Judge Brenda Kay Sannes denied the request in a ruling Tuesday. The judge wrote that federal law authorizes restitution when there is a property loss, but “Greene — or, more accurately, her campaign — expended money for personal security enhancements.”
Sannes also noted that attorneys arguing for the restitution did not establish that the security upgrades were directly linked to Morelli's threats, as opposed to other threats.
An email seeking comment was sent to Greene's congressional office.