Prosecutors: Smithtown man threatened senators over Kavanaugh

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SMITHTOWN -

A Smithtown man threatened two U.S. senators over the Supreme Court confirmation of Justice Brett Kavanaugh, according to prosecutors.

Ronald Derisi, 74, allegedly left more than 10 aggressive and threatening voicemails for the senators. The names of the senators were not publicly released.

Prosecutors say it began on Sept. 27, when he allegedly left a voicemail saying, "Yeah Kavanaugh, I don't think so" and claimed he had a "present" for a senator and that "it's a 9 mm."

The prosecution claims the calls continued to a second senator on Oct. 6. He allegedly left voicemails that said, "You better pray this guy don't get in" and "I'm gonna get you."

Prosecutors claimed in court that Derisi’s alleged threats were sophisticated, saying he left himself notes to delete his browser history, used false names and called using a burner phone.

The prosecution claims even Derisi’s wife didn’t know what was happening.

The defense said today that Derisi is suffering from severe cerebral atrophy, or shrinking of the brain. Defense attorney Peter Brill says Derisi was under the care of a psychiatrist and takes medication for his illness. The defense says 9 mm ammo was found in his home but that Derisi has given his guns to his son and they are no longer in his home.

The U.S. Attorney's Office says Derisi is charged with threatening to murder and assault United States officials. At the arraignment the judge ruled to keep him in custody and have a new psychological evaluation done. 

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