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Mayor: threats no big deal

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January 24, 2005

Fitzgerald- Fitzgerald Mayor Gerald Thompson says he...

"Couldn't be better, couldn't be better."

Friday police arrested 50 year old Walter William Mitchell for terroristic threats and acts against the mayor. Thompson says Mitchell, the former deputy director of the Ben Hill County library, was upset about being fired.

"Of course we understood that he was disgruntled, but then he sent something through the mail that the post office department discovered, and they thought it was too much to ignore."

In fact, Thompson says, postal officials in Albany intercepted two letters before he even knew about them, one addressed to him, another to city administrator Henry Tyson.

"There is an on-going investigation related to these charges about a South Georgia man, and some threats he was making," Tyson says.

Both men say they weren't worried about their safety and have been carrying out their daily activities as they normally would.

"We're all carrying on our duties to which the mayor has been elected and which we are responsible for," says Tyson.

"That's not the first time I've been threatened of course, and it will not be the last time if I stay in this business," says Thompson.

U.S. Postal inspectors in Atlanta are conducting an investigation into the letters. We tried to contact them to see what made them suspicious of the letters but have not received a response.

Posted at 6:15 PM by elaine.armstrong@walb.com

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