A Florida woman who sent death threats to the father of a boy who was killed in the 2012 shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School has been sentenced to five months in federal prison.
Lucy Richards, 57, who believes the shooting that killed 20 children in Newtown, Connecticut, was all a hoax, was sentenced on Wednesday in Fort Lauderdale after pleading guilty to transmitting threats in interstate commerce.
“You have the absolute right to think and believe as you so desire,” Senior U.S. District Judge James Cohn told her, according to the Associated Press. “You do not have the right to transmit threats to another.”
Richards was accused of sending the threatening messages to the father of 6-year-old Noah Pozner since early January, 2016.
“You gonna die. Death is coming to you real soon,” one recorded message said.
A written message warned: “Look behind you it is death.”
Richards suffers from a number of mental illnesses, including agoraphobia, obsessive compulsive disorder and anxiety disorder, according to court documents.
Noah’s father, Leonard Pozner, was not identified in the court documents but confirmed to Reuters that he was the target of Richards’ threats.
He said he believes he was singled out by Richards because of his public opposition to conspiracy theorists who believe the shooting never happened.
“I’m satisfied with the sentencing because for me it’s about raising awareness to this growing problem of alternative facts and people who are easily influenced by those facts, and then, take it upon themselves to think that they are the part of some army of good,” Pozner told Reuters.
Richards apologized to the father in a statement read before the court.
“I don’t know where my heart and head were that day, but they were not in the right place,” she said. “It was the worst mistake of my life and I am truly sorry.”
Once completing her prison sentence she will complete five months of house arrest with electronic monitoring, followed by three years probation. She is also prohibited from accessing a list of conspiracy theory websites.