At least eight people have been arrested in two weeks by state and federal authorities for threats against police on social media, in what appears to be a crackdown after the killings of officers in Dallas and Baton Rouge, the Wall Street Journal reports. Whether the charges will turn into criminal cases is unclear because they raise thorny free-speech issues in an unsettled area of the law.
The threats “have more meaning than they did two months ago,” said Daniel Linskey, a 27-year veteran of the Boston Police Department. Last week, police in Buffalo, N.Y., arrested Arthur Jordan, who was accused of sharing a Facebook post that included emojis of a police officer with a revolver pointed at the officer’s head. The criminal complaint says Jordan posted on Facebook, “Let’s Start Killin Police Lets See How Dey Like It.”