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Monroe man admits threatening police chief and county judge

Published January 30. 2013 05:04PM

A Monroe County man pleaded guilty in Carbon County court on Tuesday afternoon admitting he threatened a police chief and a county judge.

William Campbell, 52, of Stroudsburg, pleaded guilty to two counts of terroristic threats. He was charged by Nesquehoning Officer Timothy Wuttke with threatening borough Police Chief Sean Smith, and his family, and county Senior Judge Richard W. Webb, and his family.

Wuttke filed the charges against Campbell on July 24, 2012, after hearing a message on the police station answering machine.

Judge Joseph J. Matika sentenced Campbell to serve six to 23 months in the county prison on both counts with the terms running concurrently. He was given credit for 189 days spent in jail to date on the charges and will be paroled.

Prior to imposing the sentence Matika was told that Campbell has a mental health problem and had been on medication for years. He stopped taking the medication five days prior to making the phone call to police headquarters.

He told Matika, "I'm awful sorry for any inconvenience I caused anyone." He said he didn't intend to harm either Smith or Webb and claimed it was because he was not on his medication at the time that he made the call.

He also said his threats were based on a protection from abuse (PFA) order against him by his now ex-wife in which Smith and Webb were involved during the course of the filing and court proceedings.

Assistant District Attorney Cynthia Ann Dyrda Hatton read a letter from Smith in which he said the incident caused much concern for him and his family and especially affected his children.

According to the affidavit, Campbell left a message directed to Smith during which he is quoted as saying, "I'm calling to let you know how lucky you are that your (sic) still alive. I gave you life, o.k. Either you or your wife and kids, whatever I was gonna either take you out or take out your wife and kids to let you see what is like to go without, ok."

It adds, "and tell Judge Webb he's been lucky too because I gave him life."

Wuttke says in the affidavit that he called Campbell and asked him what the message meant.

"He said that it means exactly what it says, that he was going to kill both Chief Smith and Judge Webb and he wants to let them know that he is giving them life."

Matika said despite Campbell's claim he never meant to cause anyone harm, the victims and court takes it very seriously.

In addition to the jail term, Matika ordered Campbell to get a mental health evaluation and follow any recommendation for treatment, zero tolerance imposed on D&A use, render 100 hours of community service while on parole, and have no contact with Smith and his family or Webb and his family.

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