Davenport attorney Eric Puryear, who has helped to organize peaceful protests against police brutality in Davenport, said Wednesday that his work must have struck a nerve.
In Wednesday’s mail, Puryear received a threatening letter, warning him to, “Be careful you may be next. Bang.” The letter said that, “If black lives matter, tell your kind (n------) to quit killing each other.”
“My paralegal opened up the mail this afternoon,” he said. “We usually get the mail about 2:30-3 p.m. and she said, ‘You got a mean letter.’
“A lot of times if I get a mean letter it could be like a person who’s in jail I’ve never heard of before who wants me to drive three hours to hear their case and they’re mad that I won’t visit them and provide my services for free,” Puryear said. “Their idea is to sue the police and we’ll all be millionaires later. That’s not how it works.”
But the letter that arrived at his office Wednesday ended with the word, “Bang,” which makes it more than just a racist rant; it makes it threatening.
“I’ve helped organize three protests, with the fourth scheduled for the 19th (of September),” he said. “I guess I could see it as an indication of success if the idiots are taking notice. I just don’t like it.”
Puryear said he is not anti-police, or anti-law.
“I don’t hate all police officers,” he said. “I have friends who are police.” He added that he has martial arts classes in which police he knows participate.
“I just want the brutality and the racism to stop,” Puryear said. “It’s that simple.”
Puryear, who has practiced in Davenport for 10 years, said he has submitted a report to the Davenport Police Department through the online reporting, and he has submitted the letter to the FBI’s threatening letter portal.
“This was not how I was expecting my afternoon to go,” he said, adding that in today’s world of social media there are many “racist idiots” who feel emboldened.
“I’ve just never had somebody send a letter," Puryear said, "where they threatened to harm me."