Delaware man charged with hate crime for threats to neighbor

Posted at 11:53 AM, Oct 26, 2017
and last updated 2017-10-26 11:53:10-04

Police charged a Delaware man with a hate crime after he allegedly told authorities he was considering throwing Molotov cocktails at the home of neighbors he believed were Muslim.

The News Journal in Wilmington reports Gerard Medvec, 64, of Delaware City, had been spying on his neighbors with binoculars and told authorities he would "take the fight to them" by firebombing their house.

The neighbors were not Muslim.

Court documents indicate show Delaware City's police chief met with Medvec back on Oct. 5 to answer Medvec's concerns about Muslims entering the U.S. At that meeting Medvec mentioned he had a concealed carry permit and was willing to defend himself and the country.

Then, on Oct. 14, Medvec called 911 and said there had been a threat on his life. Authorities responded to that call and noticed the binoculars. Medvec said he used the binoculars to watch his neighbors. He said what drew his attention was "a black male wearing a 'Muslim hat' underneath a baseball hat."

On Oct. 17, a psychiatric social worker visited the home along with police. Officers said they saw two semi-automatic rifles in the home, and noticed Medvec had a pistol in his waistband. Medvec agreed to accompany the officers to the police station. It was there he told social workers about firebombing the house in order to "take the fight to them," according to the court documents.

The documents indicated he also made a comment about going into the house and "start shooting."

Medvec was arrested Friday. After consultation with the state attorney general's office, he was charged with terroristic threatening in association with a hate crime. A magistrate released him on $4,000 bond after ordering him to give up his firearms.

The Council on American-Islamic Relations, a Muslim civil rights group, applauded the hate crime charge as an indication that authorities were taking the issue seriously.

It wasn't immediately known if Medvec had a lawyer.