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Man faces possible hate crime charge after showing up to house of Dem lawmaker, allegedly threatening to kill her

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Alex Wong/Getty Images

A Seattle man potentially faces a felony hate crime charge after he was arrested outside the home of Democratic Rep. Pramila Jayapal (Wash.) over the weekend.

What are the details?

Seattle police arrested a 48-year-old man outside of Jayapal's house last Saturday night shortly before midnight.

Documents from the Seattle Police Department show the man allegedly drove by Jayapal's home multiple times while yelling obscenities. One neighbor even told police they heard the man say, "Go back to India, I'm going to kill you." Jayapal became the first Indian-American woman elected to Congress in 2016.

According to KING-TV, Jayapal called 911 and told dispatchers:

[Unknown] people are outside [my] house in their [vehicle] who have been [using] very obscene language. [My] husband thinks they may have shot a pellet gun, but unsure.

When responding officers arrived on scene, they found the man in the middle of street with his hands in the air. Officers discovered the man had in his possession a Glock .40 handgun. The man allegedly confirmed he "knew who lived at the residence," according to probable cause documents, and told officers he "wanted to pitch a tent on their property."

The man was arrested on a charge of malicious harassment.

Under Washington law, the crime is punishable as a Class C felony. The criminal code defines the offense as "intentionally injuring, damaging property or threatening someone because of their perception of the victim’s race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, gender, sexual orientation or mental, physical or sensory disability," the Seattle Times noted.

According to the Times, prosecutors will file official charges against the man on Wednesday. He remains in jail awaiting formal charges.

Anything else?

Jayapal's office released a statement confirming the incident, but did not offer additional comment.

"Congresswoman Jayapal confirms that incidents occurred at her Seattle home on Saturday night when she was present. The congresswoman and her family are safe and appreciate the many calls and good wishes she is receiving from constituents," the statement read.

"She is very grateful for the swift and professional response from the Seattle Police Department, the US Capitol Police, and the FBI investigators who are working together diligently on the investigation, and ensuring that she and her family stay safe," the statement added. "Because this is an ongoing investigation, she will not be commenting further at this time.”

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