A Democratic Missouri state senator wrote in a Facebook post that she hoped President Donald Trump would be assassinated, leading the Secret Service to investigate the matter.
Maria Chappelle-Nadal was chatting with a Facebook friend, who said he had a relative on Trump's Secret Service detail, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported Thursday.
"What I posted earlier, I truly believe will happen, sooner … not later," he said enigmatically.
The friend then joked that he would be investigated by the Secret Service for his comment.
"No. I will. I hope Trump is assassinated!" Chappelle-Nadal responded.
Now the Secret Service's St. Louis field office "is looking into this," the office confirmed.
"Hypothetically" in such investigations, agents try to "determine intent, to determine if there was a violation of federal law," Kristina Schmidt, special agent in charge, told the Post-Dispatch. "If there is, then we refer it to the U.S. Attorney."
Top Democrats in Missouri condemned Chappelle-Nadal's comments and called on her to resign her state legislative seat.
"I condemn it," U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill (D., Mo.) said in a brief statement to the Post-Dispatch. "It's outrageous. And she should resign."
Missouri Democratic Party chair Stephen Webber said that Chappelle-Nadal's actions "are indefensible."
"All sides need to agree that there is no room for suggestions of political violence in America—and the Missouri Democratic Party will absolutely not tolerate calls for the assassination of the president," Webber said. "I believe she should resign."
Missouri Senate Democratic Caucus leader Sen. Gina Walsh echoed those comments, saying that Chappelle-Nadal "should be ashamed of herself for adding her voice to this toxic environment."
"Promoting, supporting, or suggesting violence against anyone, especially our elected leaders, is never acceptable," Walsh added.
When contacted by the Post-Dispatch on Thursday, Chappelle-Nadal apologized.
"I didn't mean what I put up. Absolutely not. I was very frustrated," she said.
"I put that up on my personal Facebook and I should not have," she added. "It was in response to the concerns that I am hearing from residents of St. Louis."
Chappelle-Nadal explained that her comments stemmed from frustration over the violence in Charlottesville, Va., over the weekend, when white supremacist protesters clashed with counter-demonstrators. Trump has been criticized for not condemning and disavowing white supremacists and neo-Nazis in a more explicit fashion after the events in Charlottesville.
This is hardly Chapelle-Nadal's first controversial remark. In 2014, she said on MSNBC of the unrest in Ferguson, Mo., "This is our race war."
In 2011, Chapelle-Nadal threatened the life of another state lawmaker at a ‘Lil Wayne concert.
"If I had a knife, I'd cut your [expletive] throat," she told fellow Democrat Jamilah Nasheed.
She later she would not resign over a "simple mistake."
"I’m not resigning," she said. "Legislators cheat on their wives or smoke marijuana and are not asked to resign. I’m not resigning over a simple mistake."
UPDATED 4:30 P.M.: This post was updated to include statements from Missouri Democrats condemning Chappelle-Nadal's comments.
UPDATED FRIDAY, 10:48 A.M.: This post was updated to include Chapelle-Nadal's remarks that she would not resign.