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Utahn sentenced for email threat over Armstrong ban

Published February 10, 2014 5:41 pm

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This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2014, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Denver • A Utah man has been sentenced for sending a threatening email to U.S. Anti-Doping Agency CEO Travis Tygart over the agency's sanctions against Lance Armstrong.

Robert Hutchins, 60 of Sandy, Utah, was sentenced Monday in federal court in Denver to serve one year of probation with mental health treatment and perform 50 hours of community service.

Chief U.S. District Judge Marcia Krieger also ordered Hutchins to pay $3,300 to cover the cost of his probation supervision. He pleaded guilty in November to one count of sending interstate communications involving a threat.

Hutchins sent an email to Travis Tygart, head of the anti-doping agency, on Aug. 23, 2012 — just before the agency announced that Armstrong would be banned from cycling for life and stripped of his titles, including seven Tour de France titles, according to court documents.

Hutchins, who was unhappy with the investigation, addressed Tygart by name in the subject line with the message: "Hope you have body guards and bullet proof vest."

The rest of the message said Tygart was a "dead man mother f@%&*#. You just don't know what you've done!!! You're a** is f@%&*#. "

The threat led Tygart to hire private security for himself and his family, while also moving them to a secure location while the FBI located the source of the threat. The FBI then traced the email to Hutchins, who was arrested in Utah on July 16.

Last month, a retired physician from Clearwater, Fla., Gerrit Keats, was sentenced to probation and 540 hours of community service for sending a threatening email to Tygart that was more graphic.