Frederick man held in federal custody for alleged threats to Biden, Harris

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
Mary Grace Keller, The Frederick News-Post, Md.
·2 min read
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

Mar. 30—A Frederick man who faces federal charges for threatening President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris while they were running for office is now being held in federal custody until his trial date, which has not been set.

The News-Post recently learned of a detention order filed March 8 to keep James Dale Reed, 42, in federal custody.

Locally, Reed was charged and convicted of voter intimidation in Frederick County for leaving a handwritten letter at a Frederick residence. The letter was found on Oct. 4, 2020, and included threats toward then-candidates Biden and Harris and their supporters. Reed reportedly targeted the home due to political signs displayed on the property, according to police.

In Frederick County District Court, Reed was sentenced to two years in prison, suspending all but time served (132 days). He was ordered to serve three years of supervised probation.

Reed was released from local custody Feb. 24. Prior to the detention hearing in federal court March 8, there was an order to temporarily detain Reed, starting March 3.

At the federal level, Reed has been charged in the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland with threatening major candidates for the offices of president and vice president. The detention order cited evidence that no condition of Reed's release would reasonably ensure the safety of the community or any person. Also listed under the reasons for detention, a marked box read: "Weight of evidence against the defendant is strong."

An affidavit filed in support of the federal criminal complaint said doorbell camera footage and an anonymous tip helped lead investigators to identifying Reed. A copy of the letter was also included in online court documents.

Reed's attorney, Assistant Federal Public Defender David Walsh-Little, declined to comment Tuesday.

Follow Mary Grace Keller on Twitter: @MaryGraceKeller