Haverhill, MA – A Massachusetts man was arrested on multiple felony counts, after he threatened to kill officers who cited him with traffic offenses.
The incident began on Jan. 18, when officers received a report of an unregistered vehicle parked outside of a gas station, and made contact with 33-year-old Michael Hall, The Eagle-Tribune reported.
Officers spotted Hall’s Mercury Mountaineer outside of a convenience store at 4:51 p.m., and noticed that the word “EXEMPT” was emblazoned over the area where a vehicle license plate should have been mounted.
Hall claimed that he did not need to register the vehicle if he was “traveling,” police said. He quickly became argumentative, and was ultimately arrested for disorderly conduct, driving with a suspended license, and operating unregistered and uninsured motor vehicle.
Police said that Hall began sending threatening Facebook messages to officers shortly after the incident, and noted that he seemed to endorse a “sovereign citizen ideology,” The Eagle-Tribune reported.
“I will travel in an unregistered uninsured automobile for as long as I please,” Hall said in one message. “This is my notice to your department. I will call 911 on any officer that illegally tries to pull me over and or detains me without probable cause while I am using my automobile in a safe manner.”
He argued that officers had violated his constitutional rights at the gas station, and said he was being “maliciously prosecuted,” according to The Eagle-Tribune.
Hall claimed that officers had committed multiple felonies during the incident, to include having activated their patrol vehicle emergency lights without just cause, and malicious prosecution. Officers who failed to intervene when he was maliciously prosecuted were also guilty of a felony, he said.
Sovereign citizens generally access fake legal information on the internet, and are often unaware that the information isn't accurate. Their commitment to this false information makes them exceptionally dangerous, because they believe that violence is an appropriate response when their imaginary rights are violated.
“I don’t appreciate bullies,” he said, adding that he had a right to resist arrest in order to avoid being a victim of police corruption and brutality.
Hall insisted that he was a “peaceful person,” and demanded that police drop the charges against him and leave him alone.
"I want you to understand I am not a danger to your officers," he said, according to The Eagle-Tribune.
As the threats escalated, Hall claimed that, because police had his unregistered, uninsured vehicle towed from the gas station, they had agreed to purchase the Mercury Mountaineer for $75,000.
"I have the right to kill a cop who violates my constitutional rights when I am exercising them," Hall told police, according to The Eagle-Tribune. "You've kicked me while I'm down, wasted my time and broken my family. I've spent a month in jail due to your lies and falsified criminal reports."
"This corrupt nation of cops is pushing good people to become terrorists against their own government," Hall wrote on the Copblock website on Feb. 9. "Just like a man coming home to bombed house, he wasnt angry before nor was it his bomb to accept. And he still would have his family..."
The Copblock website was sold to a media company last year when founder Adam Mueller listed it for auction after he was arrested for drug trafficking. The site has been largely inactive since, because Mueller sold the group's Facebook page separately to a different company which destroyed the site's audience.
The Haverhill Police Department ultimately issued a safety bulletin, and advised all law enforcement officers to exercise extreme caution during any encounters with Hall.
"Michael Hall's posts are considered to be attempts to intimidate the Haverhill Police and its sworn police officers from conducting their oath to uphold the law and protect its citizens' safety,” police said in their report, according to The Eagle-Tribune. "Hall has an extensive criminal history in Massachusetts including violent offenses.”
Officers also expressed concern that Hall’s escalating behaviors and possible mental instability presented a danger to the public.
Hall was arrested on Feb. 27 for numerous warrants, including failure to appear in court in relation to the Jan. 18 traffic violations, four counts of threats to kill a police officer, and witness intimidation.
He was being held without bond, and was due back in court on Tuesday.