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San Francisco House candidate on alleged death threat to opponent: 'Taken out of context'

"I'm going to rip off your dumb man bun and beat you to death with it," Bianca Von Krieg allegedly sent in a message to Shahid Buttar.

Published: June 28, 2022 3:40pm

Updated: June 30, 2022 6:46pm

Shahid Buttar, a Democratic candidate who ran against House Speaker Nancy Pelosi in the California primary election in early June, has alleged that fellow candidate Bianca Von Krieg sent him a death threat, broke into his home and stole data from his campaign. 

Von Krieg's interim chief of staff, Sahar Costello, on Wednesday acknowledged the death threat but said it was "taken out of context."

Buttar and Von Krieg, both self-described Democratic Socialists, respectively placed third and sixth in California's top-two primary for the state's 11th Congressional District. (In California, candidates from all parties compete in one primary.)

Pelosi won with 71.7% of the vote.

Buttar wrote in a Twitter thread a week after the election: "As we await the final results in our race, I received some messages from a fellow candidate that unfortunately included a death threat. Given the political violence sweeping our country, I've shared the message with authorities.

"I received this threat on Sunday via SMS message from Bianca Von Krieg. It comes after she repeatedly visited my home uninvited, and once forced her way inside before my housemate threatened to call law enforcement if she did not leave."

Buttar posted a screenshot of the message he received that reads: "You jacka-- you split the godd--- vote! I'm going to rip off your dumb man bun and beat you to death with it."

In his Twitter thread, Buttar also alleged that Von Krieg stole his supporters' data.

Just the News reached out to Von Krieg for comment and received a response from Costello, who said that Buttar's "bizarre tantrums" were "unfortunate," and that Von Krieg "tried to collaborate with him" in their efforts against Pelosi.

"No one from our office has made, or ever will make, a death threat to anyone, that's beneath us," Costello said, adding that the alleged death threat "was taken out of context," calling Buttar a "cry baby" and "perpetual victim."

Buttar told Just the News that he had reported the alleged death threat, break-in and data theft to the FBI and Justice Department said he didn't know whether they were investigating the allegations.

The FBI and DOJ said that their general policies are to not confirm or deny the existence of ongoing investigations.

When asked about reporting the alleged crimes to local police, Buttar said that department "would likely take an interest in at most the death threat – although given the [San Francisco Police Department's] notorious failures to investigate more or less anything, I would be surprised if they took an interest at all."

Buttar also said he hoped that federal investigators would be more likely to take an interest in the campaign data theft allegation since it is a felony.

"They are also less subject to the local political pressure that encouraged the theft and threats," he also said about federal investigators.

Von Krieg's campaign website is no longer active, though it had been about a week ago. Her social media accounts have also not published any posts since around June 9.

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