A crazed “cat woman” has been indicted on federal charges that she attempted to kill Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, former President Barack Obama and officials at a federal office in Maryland.
The woman, 46-year-old Julia Poff of Houston, was arrested and charged earlier this month. She has been kept in jail ahead of her trial following her indictment for sending packages designed to explode last year, according to court documents reviewed by Reuters.
“Poff presents a real safety risk to witnesses and others in the community,” wrote U.S. Magistrate Judge Frances Stacy in a five-page order detailing the allegations which include mailing packages designed to kill, transporting explosives and other criminal counts.
In addition, as reported by KHOU, she has also been charged with Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Fraud and False Declaration in Bankruptcy.
A package laden with explosives was mailed to Obama in October 2016 when he was still in office. An explosive package was also sent to the U.S. Social Security Administration office in Maryland. Both of them were discovered during the course of regular mail screening, reports noted.
Also in October 2016, a package was sent to Greg Abbott, a Republican. He opened his package but it failed to detonate because he opened it the wrong way. If it had been opened correctly, documents say “it could’ve caused severe burns and death.”
Investigators at the FBI’s crime lab found hair on the package mailed to Obama that agents traced back to one of Poff’s cats.
As to motives, Poff is alleged to have expressed a dislike for the former president, while she was upset with the Texas governor because she believed that, in his previous role as the state’s attorney general, he acted to disrupt her ability to receive support from an ex-husband, according to the judge. It was not clear what type of support Poff was seeking, but the attorney general’s office has a division that handles child support requests following separations and/or divorces.
It also wasn’t clear why she mailed an explosive package to the Social Security office.
Poff reached out to the Houston Chronicle to defend herself, according to Reuters, saying that investigators took some trash from her home that was “used in some serious crimes that we did not commit and know nothing about,” she said, never explaining who she was referring to as “we.”
The packages contained pyrotechnic powder, according to reports. What’s more, investigators found a large number of fireworks at her home in Brookshire, which is west of Houston, according to the judge’s order. She is scheduled to appear in court for a hearing Jan. 2.
Allegations against Poff are just the latest example of what many see as a huge increase in politics-related criminal activity and violence directed at members of both parties, though Republicans and conservatives have suffered the worst of it.
During President Donald J. Trump’s campaign, which stretched from the summer of 2015 until the November 2016 election, scores of his supporters were targeted by Alt-Left groups like Antifa. (Related: FBI, DHS Officially Classify Antifa Activities As “Domestic Terrorist Violence.”)
What we didn’t know at the time is that somewhere along the way the FBI and Department of Homeland Security began issuing warnings that such groups were domestic terrorist organizations.
Also, the shooting of House Majority Whip Steve Scalise over the summer is another example of the extreme violence being directed at Republicans. Scalise, who represents a congressional district in Louisiana, was nearly killed by a Left-wing supporter of Sen. Bernie Sanders, James T. Hodgkinson. He was carrying a “hit list” of other GOP lawmakers when he was shot and killed by Capitol Police.
There are many more examples of violence against Republicans, and you can see them here.
J.D. Heyes is also editor-in-chief of The National Sentinel.