Two women who made a court appearance are freed awaiting trial, sternly warned by a U.S. Court judge in Cedar Rapids not to contact judges in the district or people they’ve been involved with in previous lawsuits in the courts. The two are charged with sending threatening letters to the court, letters that referred to the slaying of a judge’s family earlier this month in Illinois. Linn County Sheriff Don Zeller says law-enforcement took the case very seriously right from the start. The first two letters that were found were turned over to the sheriff’s office so he began the investigation. After a third letter was found, they brought in the U.S. Attorney’s Office and Postal Inspectors. 68-year-old Marlys Floyd of Cedar Rapids and her daughter, 43-year-old Rebecca Pippert of Keystone Especially in this time when there are concerns about terrorism, the sheriff says it’s not wise to be sending threats to judges.The sheriff can’t talk much about the threats, their targets, and what cases those judges had recently ruled upon — mostly because there’s a trial in federal court coming up on all that information. In cases like this the sheriff says you sometimes can’t tell if it’s a copycat or just something that happened coincidentally around the time of other events. But he says with this month’s Atlanta courthouse shootings, the killings at a school in Minnesota, and the Chicago-area slaying of a judge’s family, it’s not the time to be sending threatening letters. He says the responsibility of law-enforcement is to make an arrest, as they’ve now done, and next for federal prosecutors to send a message to anyone else who might think of doing such a thing that it won’t be tolerated.
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