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Blogger Arraigned Over Call To Arms
Hal Turner, the Internet radio host accused of inciting Catholics to "take up arms" against two state legislators and an official in the Office of State Ethics, didn't have a lot to say during his arraignment Monday morning at Superior Court in Hartford.
But he was quite chatty when State Capitol Police Officer Timothy Boyle contacted him June 2 to ask about what he had written on his blog regarding state Rep. Michael Lawlor, D- East Haven; state Sen. Andrew McDonald, D- Stamford; and Thomas Jones, an employee in the ethics office.
Turner, 47, of North Bergen, N.J., acknowledged to the officer that he had written about a legislative proposal introduced and subsequently withdrawn earlier this year that would have changed the way the Roman Catholic Church is governed, giving more authority to lay members.
"I did an article on it, and then posted some very terse commentary at the bottom, so certainly I'm responsible for what I wrote," Turner told the officer, according to the warrant for Turner's arrest on a single count of inciting injury to person or property, a Class C felony.
In that commentary, Turner termed the actions of the three men "tyranny" and urged Catholics to "take up arms and put down this tyranny by force." He then wrote that the following night he would be giving out the home addresses of Lawlor, McDonald and Jones.
"It is our intent to foment direct action against these individuals personally," Turner wrote on his blog. "These beastly government officials should be made an example of as a warning to others in government: Obey the Constitution or die. If any state attorney, police department or court thinks they're going to get uppity with us about this; I suspect we have enough bullets to put them down too."
Asked by about his commentary by Boyle, Turner responded: "It's certainly my intent to motivate the public to get involved in this, and certainly we hope that nobody's going to go off the deep end and do something terrible, but ... you never can tell."
Turner was ordered back to court July 14.
After his arraignment, Turner declined to answer questions. He drove off in a BMW convertible, top down, with a cigar in his mouth. He offered a friendly wave to reporters gathered in front of the courthouse.