Campaign death threats prompt investigation in West Deptford Twp., NJ

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Ray Chintall, a Republican candidate for Township Committee, told Action News he's been the target of a series of death threats that began with an arrow through a window screen.

An investigation is underway after a Republican municipal election candidate says he was threatened in West Deptford Township.

Ray Chintall, a Republican who is running for Township Committee, told Action News he's been the target of a series of death threats that began Thursday with an arrow through a window screen at his home on Royal Lane.

A note attached read, "defending the honor of our mayor. You're a coward. You're dead," said Chintall. "At that point I said, 'No that's not just an errant arrow. That was intended for me.'"

Chintall is running against the current mayor, Denise DiCarlo.

A campaign sign in his backyard also contained a threat.

And another threat came Saturday.

Chintall received a threatening message in the mail along with two current Republican committee members and the township's Republican Party chair.

The messages have been turned over to police.

"My letter says, 'Chairman Mike McManamy, you're all dead. All low-life Republicans.' It's signed, The Mayor's Knights," said committee chairman Michael McManamy.

Asked if he is concerned for his safety, committee member Jeff Hanson replied, "I'm more concerned for my wife, my mother in law, who live at my house."

The men don't believe the mayor is involved. Instead, they chalk it up to bitter political disagreements they've had with Democrats.

"There's a group of people here that have concerns about their town, so they make their voices known," said committee member Jerry Maher. "They want to make a difference, and they have to worry about this. It's crazy."

"We have not ruled anyone out," said West Deptford Township Police Chief Samuel DiSimone. "We're looking at every Democrat, we're looking at every Republican. We're looking at all Independents and outside people."

DiSimone says the letters have been sent to a crime lab for fingerprinting.

The campaign has been dirty. Just days ago Chintall and the committeemen were caught texting disparaging remarks about the mayor.

"I don't want people to look at the township as a joke," said DiSimone. "It's a shame this stuff happens when election comes up."

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