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Man who threatened to murder Alaska’s U.S. senators pleads guilty


A Delta Junction man has pleaded guilty to two federal charges of threatening to kill Alaska’s U.S. Senators.

Jay Allen Johnson signed a plea agreement Monday that states he’s guilty of threatening to murder Sens. Lisa Murkowski and Dan Sullivan in separate voicemail messages he left in September.

Those are two of six counts listed on a Nov. 19 indictment. In return for Johnson’s guilty pleas, Assistant U.S. Attorney Ryan Tansey agreed to not pursue the other counts, which include allegations of weapons misconduct related to seven firearms that federal officers seized during a raid on Johnson’s home in Delta Junction in October.

Federal law prohibits him from owning or having access to firearms, because he’s a convicted felon. Johnson admits to that offense as part of the plea agreement, which states the firearms are subject to forfeiture.

The 65-year-old Johnson was arrested Oct. 4 and since then has been held at Fairbanks Correctional Center.

Johnson’s attorney, Jason Weiner, didn’t return a phone call for comment Monday, and neither Murkowski nor Sullivan offered a response.

A U.S. Attorney’s Office spokesperson said Johnson is scheduled to be sentenced on April 8. He faces a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison, a $250,000 fine and three years of supervised release after he serves jail time.

Editor's note: This story has been updated.

Tim Ellis has been working as a KUAC reporter/producer since 2010. He has more than 30 years experience in broadcast, print and online journalism.