Last spring, a caller to the Mackinac Center for Public Policy unleashed a profane series of death and bomb threats in phone messages left at the Center's headquarters in Midland, Mich.
On Feb. 2, a Laura Campbell of Waukegan, Ill., was charged with making death and bomb threats against the Mackinac Center on April 1, 2011, according to court documents. She was to be arraigned on those charges Feb. 15, but the arraignment was rescheduled until next week, according to Kim Nerheim of the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
The U.S. Attorney charged that Campbell used a telephone to make an “alleged attempt to be made to kill, injure, and intimidate an individual and unlawfully to damage and destroy a building … by means of an explosive,” according to the documents filed in the U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois, Eastern Division.
Campbell’s attorney, Rosalie Lindsay Guimaraes didn’t return a phone message seeking comment.
A series of threatening voice messages was left on the Mackinac Center's voice mail after national news outlets reported that the Center had filed Freedom of Information Act requests with the labor studies departments at three public universities in Michigan for emails of professors that were suspected of being more political than scholarly.
The request also asked for emails that contained the words, "Rachel Maddow," who is a liberal talk show host on MSNBC. Her name was used to narrow the request because she had been a regular critic of Gov. Rick Snyder and his labor-related legislation.
As a result of the Mackinac Center's request, Wayne State University in Detroit abruptly removed several pages from its website.
“Scotty Walker is dead. So are you,” one voice message said. "We are going to just destroy you and take you down. We will destroy you. … You are on Main Street. You are the first place to be bombed,” another message said.
Mackinac Center President Joseph G. Lehman said the organization focuses on civil discourse and persuasion.
“The very root of our philosophy is avoiding the use of force to achieve political ends,” Lehman said. “Our work is open to public scrutiny. We will welcome all those who have a legitimate critique of our work. But using force or threat of force is exactly what we are not about and what no one should be for.”