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Former Northeast Texas Resident Pleads Guilty to Threatening President

An area man has been convicted of making threats against the President of the United States from his state prison cell.Joseph Scott Sword of Cooper, formerly of Commerce, pleaded guilty Wednesday, according to U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Texas John M. Bales.

According to information presented in court, on May 31, 2011, Sword, who was incarcerated in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice Stiles Unit, in Jefferson County, wrote a letter threatening the President and First Family. Sword stated that he was a member of a violent street gang called the Black P Stone and that he had men on the street watching the President and his family.

Sword was indicted by a federal grand jury on July 18, 2012. Sword faces up to five years in federal prison at sentencing. A sentencing date has not been set.

Sword, who listed a Commerce address at the time, was indicted by the Hunt County grand jury in 2007 on one count of aggravated robbery in connection with an incident from September 2, 2007 in which he was alleged to have stolen money from a female victim while threatening her with a knife. Sword pleaded not guilty to a reduced charge of robbery in December 2008 and was sentenced to six years and six months in jail.