Green Bay officials threatened after passing mask mandate

GREEN BAY, Wis. — Green Bay police are investigating threats made against city officials over a new mandate requiring face coverings in public buildings because of the coronavirus.

Alderman Randy Scannell, who first proposed the mask ordinance, says one email called him a traitor who must die and that the sender would make sure Scannell would die.

He said it appears multiple people are sending threatening emails to council members and city officials, including the mayor.

Police Chief Andrew Smith said all 12 council members, regardless of how they voted on the ordinance, received at least one of the threats. Smith emailed all city officials, telling them to be vigilant, WLUK-TV reported.

“In our current political climate and being cognizant of peoples’ passion on this subject, I urge each of you to be aware of your surroundings and the people you encounter,” Smith wrote. “Increasing our awareness and taking reasonable steps to ensure our safety is always a good idea, and now is a good time to be a bit more cautious.”

The council spent close to six hours taking public comments and deliberating the ordinance before passing on a 7-5 vote Tuesday night.

Council member Lynn Gerlach called the threats “unsettling” and took them as a sign of how much the mask issue has become a flashpoint.