Felon Who Threatened Law Enforcement Sentenced for Illegal Firearm

NORFOLK, Va. – A Virginia Beach man was sentenced today to 4 years in prison for possessing a firearm as a felon.

According to court documents, in March 2021, Thomas Liddle, 28, and a co-conspirator made death threats to a Norfolk Police Detective/FBI Task Force Officer (TFO) and his family. Specifically, Liddle and his co-conspirator sent text messages to the TFO’s cell phone threatening to kill him, his wife, and his family. The messages indicated the conspirators knew where the TFO lived and worked. The TFO also received threatening calls.

In December 2021, there was an arrest warrant for Liddle for failing to appear in court. The Norfolk Police Department (NPD) received a tip concerning Liddle’s location. NPD observed Liddle in the driver’s seat of a parked vehicle. When Liddle was being arrested, officers observed a firearm in the pocket of Liddle’s pants. Liddle had been previously convicted in 2014 in Norfolk of robbery, burglary, and use of a firearm, thereby making his possession of a firearm illegal. After the arrest, Liddle admitted he was present when the threatening calls were made to the TFO and admitted he identified the TFO for his conspirator to make the threats.

Jessica D. Aber, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; Ramin Fatehi, Norfolk Commonwealth’s Attorney; Brian Dugan, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Norfolk Field Office; and Michael Goldsmith, Interim Chief of Norfolk Police, made the announcement after sentencing by Chief U.S. District Judge Mark S. Davis.

Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Graham M. Stolle and Assistant U.S. Attorney Joe DePadilla prosecuted the case.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), which is the centerpiece of the Department of Justice’s violent crime reduction efforts. PSN is an evidence-based program proven to be effective at reducing violent crime. Through PSN, a broad spectrum of stakeholders work together to identify the most pressing violent crime problems in the community and develop comprehensive solutions to address them. As part of this strategy, PSN focuses enforcement efforts on the most violent offenders and partners with locally based prevention and reentry programs for lasting reductions in crime.

A copy of this press release is located on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia. Related court documents and information are located on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia or on PACER by searching for Case No. 2:22-cr-11.