JACKSON — The writer of an email that Jackson city officials deemed threatening will not be charged, despite a criminal investigation, a local news site reported. The email was in reaction to the city’s recent passage of a non-discrimination ordinance and Pride festival.
The July 29 email — authored by local landlord Robert Tulloch and sent to Jackson City Manager Patrick Burtch and the seven City Council members — referenced events relating to the inaugural Jackson Pride Festival Aug. 5.
The email reads: “I saw something on a site about marching to Blackman park and raising a flag? I hope they are not planning to raise a gay flag. That is an in your face declaration of war and will be met with a violent response. This IS the queer agenda,” according to an Aug. 1 Jackson Police Department report.
On July 31, Jackson Director of Police and Fire Services Elmer Hitt met with Burtch and City Attorney Bethany Vujnov to discuss the July 29 email and three others written by Tulloch and sent to city officials earlier this year, the report said. The content of the emails related to the city’s non-discrimination ordinance, the Jackson Pride Festival and Tulloch’s views on homosexuality in general, the police report said.
Hitt assigned a lieutenant to investigate the July 29 email, the police report states. “My interpretation of the email was that it was of a threatening nature,” Hitt wrote in a supplemental report.
The prosecutors office said the email didn’t rise to the level of a specific threat and won’t file charges. Tulloch told the Jackson Citizen-Patriot that he didn’t think the email was threatening, just his opinion.
Tulloch told MLive that he believed that flying the pride flag during the festival would be promoting the LGBT “recruitment agenda.” He also believes his email was sent to online gay publications after the home of Jackson Pride Center Director Nikki Joly burned down Aug. 10. Tulloch is also the former president and current advisor of the Jackson Area Landlords Association. He believes a council member is trying to link the email to the fire, which is still under investigation.