Popular singers and others who perform before large crowds often receive death threats that are not taken seriously by them or by the police. An exception occurred in Orlando on Friday, February 2, when a local man was arrested for attempting to commit violent crimes against pop singer Lana Del Rey.
Police said they received a tip from a caller about a “credible threat” against the singer, who was scheduled to perform that evening at the Amway Center before a crowd of 8,000 people. The suspect allegedly made several posts on social media about the singer; police described the posts as “cryptic and threatening.” The defendant was arrested near the Amway Center as he was getting out of an Uber taxi that allegedly transported him from Tampa to Orlando. Police say they found a 3″ knife on the suspect when he was arrested.
The social media posts made specific reference to the singer, and police allege that the post caused Del Rey to “fear for her safety.” The police characterized the posts as threats to kidnap Del Rey. In one post, the suspect is alleged to have written that “the entire coliseum will know who I am when I get there.” He is also accused of referring to the singer as “my queen.”
The suspect was arraigned on Sunday morning. The judge rejected the claim of attempted kidnapping as not supported by evidence of probable cause, but he ordered the suspect to be incarcerated. The defendant rejected his right to have an attorney appointed to represent him and represented himself at the hearing. No trial date has been set.
Source: Orlando Sentinel, “Man arrested in stalking, kidnap attempt of Lana Del Rey calls charges ‘ridiculous’,” Jason Ruiter, Feb. 4, 2018