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Man Pleads Guilty to Making Islamic Center Death Threats on Social Media

By William Vogeler, Esq. on January 30, 2018 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

Mark Lucian Feigin heaped anti-Muslim comments on an Islamic organization's Facebook page.

"The more Muslims we allow into America the more terror we will see," he posted. A few days later, he added: "Practicing Islam can slow or even reverse the process of human evolution."

When he was charged with a felony hate crime, he said he was just doing the same thing Donald Trump did during the election. The difference was, Feigin also made death threats.

Death Threats

Prosecutors accused Feigin of calling in death threats to the Islamic Center of Southern California last year. Investigators said he also tried to discourage them from testifying at his trial.

In a motion to dismiss, Feigin argued that rhetoric like his was "common during the heated election season in the fall of 2016." he cited a Washington Post article about then-candidate Trump's comments on Islam and Muslims.

The strategy didn't work, but Feigin worked out a deal. He pleaded guilty to two misdemeanor counts of making harassing communications. Attorney General Xavier Becerra called it a victory.

"We will not turn a blind eye to violent threats targeted at individuals based on prejudice, whether because of race, ethnicity, religion, disability, gender or sexual orientation," he said. "An attack on one of us is an attack on all of us."

Guns and Ammo

When officers first questioned Feigin, he admitted posting the hate messages.

On the misdeamnor charges, California Penal Code Section 653m(b) provides that "every person who, with intent to annoy or harass, makes repeated telephone calls or makes repeated contact by means of an electronic communication device ... to another person is ... guilty of a misdemeanor. Nothing in this subdivision shall apply to telephone calls or electronic contacts made in good faith or during the ordinary course and scope of business."

Officers also found 15 guns and more than five buckets of ammunition in Feigin's home. Under the felony charge, he faced six years in prison.

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