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La Jolla resident and Children’s Pool activist Kent Douglas Trego just pleaded guilty in federal court to threatening a federal witness, a crime that is punishable by up to 10 years imprisonment and a $250,000 fine.
For years, debate has been raging over whether a colony of seals that has made its home at the Children’s Pool Beach should be allowed to stay, unfettered by people using the beach, or whether the beach should be open to humans.
Trego was accused of sending a threatening e-mail to an animal rights activist who reported two scuba divers who disrupted seals at the beach last September.
According to the federal prosecutor, Trego admitted to following the two scuba divers onto the Children’s Pool beach. The divers entered the water and caused some of the seals to flush into the water. A volunteer at the Animal Protection and Rescue League who videotaped the incident reported the scuba divers to federal law enforcement agents of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
A release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office states that after the scuba divers were ticketed for misdemeanor offences, Trego used a computer at the La Jolla Riford Library to send a threatening e-mail to the activist. Here’s the text of the e-mail, with the witness’s name removed by the federal government, from the press release:
Two divers who used the Children’s Pool in September have been cited by federal wildlife marshalls for disturbing the seals. [Witness] was apparently the one who turned them in.
The problem is now that revenge will be taken out on [witness]. Many of the local divers have close friends in the California motorcycle clubs. As is this case, motorcycle club
members have been contacted about [witness] and [he/she] will be dealt with very harshly, if [he/she] is not killed.
They know that if [he/she] is not in San Diego, [he/she] may be found in San Francisco. Either San Diego or Oakland hit hogs will be involved in [his/her] punishment.
[He/She] has brought this on [himself/herself].
He will be sentenced in July.