OMAHA, Neb. — An Omaha man has been arrested on suspicion of making threats against Republican U.S. Sen. Joni Ernst of Iowa, including that he could kill her.
Federal court records show Robert William Simet, 64, was arrested Friday by FBI agents in Omaha and charged with threatening a U.S. official.
An arrest affidavit says employees of a Pacific Junction, Iowa, motorcycle shop told an FBI agent that Simet had been there Wednesday and made several statements about Ernst, including his belief that she was a member of the Islamic State.
Simet said he knew Ernst was scheduled to speak Saturday at an event at the motorcycle business. Simet is accused of telling an employee he “could kill” Ernst at the event, and told another employee that “everyone in the government needs to be killed off.”
Simet appeared Friday in federal court in Council Bluffs, Iowa, where his preliminary hearing was set for Tuesday. Simet’s federal public defender, Matt Lee Smart of Sioux City, did not immediately return a message Friday afternoon seeking comment.
Ernst’s office referred questions to U.S. Capitol Police, which said Friday it does not comment on ongoing investigations.