Joseph Hilton Dierks, 34, of Waterloo, Iowa, was sentenced to six years in federal prison for writing threatening tweets aimed at U.S. Sen. Joni Ernst. During August of 2017, Dierks persistently threatened that he would shoot the Senator in the head along with statements and tweets against women and African-Americans.
In one of his tweets, Dierks threatened that he would shoot the senator and sent her a 2010 video depicting a man shooting a woman. Following his threatening tweets, Dierks was visited by Waterloo police about his statements. Dierks promised to "tone it down" after police spoke to him but he continued to write threatening tweets a day after the police visited him.
Dierks was charged for sending the threatening tweets, and the presiding Judge Linda Reade sentenced him to six years in federal prison after noting that he had a prior criminal record for harassing a police officer and carrying weapons.