A Lewiston man has pleaded guilty to charges related to racist death threats sent via Facebook Messenger.

The Maine Man Targeted a Black Family in His Apartment Complex

Charles Allen Barnes, 46, of Lewiston was in court this week, charged with one count of threatening communications in interstate commerce. The charge stems from racist death threats made to a Black family living in his apartment complex.

Threats to a Lewiston Family Were Indirectly Sent Through Facebook Messenger

According to the office of the U.S. Department of Justice, District of Maine the message was recorded on Facebook Messenger in August 2022. The racial slur-laden voice message made threats, in graphic and violent terms, about killing Barnes' neighbor. In the message,

'Barnes made repeated derogatory references to the neighbor's race and stated that he was waiting in his car outside the neighbor's apartment and would kill the next person who emerged from it.'

Barnes then sent the recording to an acquaintance he knew to be close personal friends with the neighbor he threatened. Alarmed by the recording, that person forwarded the message to Barnes' neighbor to warn her that she was potentially in danger.

Charles Barnes' Sentence Could Be Enhanced By the Nature of the Crime


He will be sentenced sometime later and could face a maximum penalty of five years. If the federal judge determines that Barnes intentionally selected the victim of his crime because of the victim's race, a sentencing enhancement could be applied.

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Gallery Credit: Jordan Verge

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