Man accused of threatening Obama pleads not guilty

(AP) – A Northern California man accused of sending threatening e-mails to President Barack Obama and other officials has pleaded not guilty to federal charges.

Federal authorities say 59-year-old John Gimbel of Crescent City sent a new batch of messages on Sept. 28 after previously being warned to stop. Authorities say the e-mails contained racist, profane language and included threats to the first lady.

Gimbel was arrested Oct. 6 by the U.S. Secret Service and was indicted before Obama appeared in San Francisco on Thursday for a fundraiser.

Randall Davis, Gimbel’s former attorney, says Gimbel argues he was exercising his free speech rights.

On Monday, a federal public defender was appointed to the case, which has been transferred to San Francisco.

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