MIAMI (CBSMiami) — A man accused of threatening to kill a Florida lawmaker in an online posting ranted about Republicans during a courtroom hearing to evaluate his mental health.
Steve St. Felix said he was sorry about his Facebook post and did not mean to harm Florida Rep. Jose Felix Diaz, but was fed up with the Republican party.
Days earlier, the 34-year-old St. Felix allegedly posted a message on Facebook to Diaz saying, “I’ll kill your [expletive] and you better not show up to the next REC meeting.”
In court for a mental health evaluation on Thursday, St. Felix waved and smiled for the camera before unleashing an outburst.
“Marco Rubio! Nelson Diaz! Manny Diaz! Manny Diaz Junior! Carlos Gimenez! (Julio) Robaina,” he rattled off before being escorted out of the courtroom.
He even threatened a cameraman.
“Torturing my son, man! Get him outta here,” he continued in a stream of emotion. “Alright cameraman, alright! Marco Rubio, West Miami, right? That’s right, baby!”
The tirade followed into the hallway with St. Felix shouting about his “two sons” and “Marco Rubio.”
“It was shocking to see what happened. I think anybody that watched it saw a gentleman that clearly needs medication,” said State Rep. Diaz about the tirade. “I pray for the gentleman. I hope he gets the appropriate mental health care that he needs right now.”
Police put Diaz and his family on 24-hour guard after the Facebook post.
The state representative was particularly concerned about their safety following the attack earlier this month in Washington, D.C. that critically wounded Republican Congressman Steve Scalise and four others during baseball practice.
“Explicitly threatened me more than once, saying that they wanted to kill me. Obviously I am a family man. I have two younger kids and a wife. It was a spooky thing to see,” said Diaz. “Because he has a history of mental illness and a criminal record, so there was a perfect recipe for us to be concerned.”
Diaz is running for the Senate. A primary’s scheduled for July 25.
St. Felix told police he was not on his medication when he made the post but was currently taking his meds. He’s being held on $500,000 bond and was told to have no contact with Diaz.