Lacey police arrest suspect accused of calling congressman's office; threatened to shoot people

Staff writerSeptember 19, 2013 

Lacey police arrested a 44-year-old Pierce County resident Wednesday after learning he made a telephone threat to shoot people at a government office in Oregon during a call to U.S. Rep. Denny Heck's field office in Lacey, court papers state.

Jeffrey Karvanek was being held at the Thurston County Jail Thursday on suspicion of felony harassment, making threats to kill. Karvanek was being held without bail pending a "safe to be at large" evaluation.

A male caller had reportedly made threats to the Oregon Department of Human Services in Salem, Oregon, while calling Heck's congressional field office Wednesday, according to Lacey police.

According to court papers:

Officials in Heck's Lacey office apparently knew Karvanek, and when Karvanek called Wednesday, he told someone there "that he was going to the Oregon Department of Human Services and start shooting people until he got his son back."

Karvanek apparently believes that the Oregon DHS has assisted his ex-wife in kidnapping his son. His threats included suicidal comments and being "the next shooter we see on the news."

During the call, he said he was going to Oregon to shoot people at least five times. Karvanek was "agitated and angry" during the calls.

With the assistance of the Pierce County Sheriff's Office, Lacey police located Karvanek and arrested him at his home in Pierce County Wednesday night. He admitted to Lacey police that he had called Heck's Lacey office.

"He believes that the Oregon DHS helped kidnap his son and helped his wife get a divorce. His history is lengthy with DHS and he has had several court issues with them dating back to 2010."

"Karvanek stated he did make comments similar to shooting people, however he stated he was watching television at the time of the call, and the news channel was talking about the recent mass shooting at the military base and he was trying to say he didn't want to be like the notorious shooters and lose control."

During an interview with Lacey police, Karvanek named several people in the court system he believes are responsible for keeping his son from him.

Lacey Police Lt. Phil Comstock said Thursday that officers were en route to search for firearms at Karvanek's home.

Heck's spokesman in Washington D.C., Phil Gardner, declined to comment on the incident when reached by email Thursday.

Karvanek was booked at the Thurston County Jail on suspicion of felony harassment.

Jeremy Pawloski: 360-754-5445

The News Tribune is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service