The Montreal Gazette reports that Montreal Police have finally been motivated to start an investigation into tens of thousands of death threats sent by one man who calls himself David Mabus and who uses hundreds of e-mail accounts, twitter accounts, and forum IDs to send pre-written death threats to skeptics and atheists. Hate speech, anyone? International death threats, anyone?
The petition points out
“Anyone who associates with scientifically and skeptically minded people,” it adds, “is likely to become a target for unsettling rants and threats to their life and well-being,” with recipients including “scientists, writers, public figures, atheists, and their friends.”
“Mabus” apparently takes religion as his excuse to issue threats of torture and decapitation.
Many people have filed format complaints:
Tim Farley, a computer-security expert in Atlanta, Ga., told The Gazette that, “as instructed” by Montreal police, “I filed a report with the Atlanta police on this person in January  when he first started sending me direct death threats.” Farley said he also faxed that report – on Feb. 10 at 3:43 p.m. – to Station 7 in St. Laurent, the station nearest to where the man apparently lives and works.
“Today (Wednesday [Aug. 10]) was the first time anyone from the police has ever called me,” Farley added.
In a typical excuse, police claim never to have heard of the problem:
…Monday afternoon, following an inquiry by The Gazette, a Montreal police public-relations official said: “We haven’t received any complaints” about ‘Mabus.’
[Montreal police spokesperson Lt. Ian] Lafrenière said he was not aware of earlier complaints to police about the man’s activities…. Lafrenière said he wasn’t aware of any complaint from [UMM Prof. PZ] Myers.
Prof. Myers filed at least one formal complaint in 2009.