A Muslim woman who allegedly sent "suspicious" packages to New York Rep. Peter King and New York state Sen. Greg Ball in November was shot to death by police on Christmas morning in Marietta, Georgia, according to the Atlanta-Journal Constitution.
Jameela Cecila Barnette allegedly attacked a Cobb County police officer who had knocked on her apartment door after responding to an alarm. She was armed with a knife and a handgun, and the officer fired his weapon at Barnette in response to the assault, according to Cobb Police spokesman Sgt. Dana Pierce. Barnette died at the scene.
Rep. King, the chair of the House Homeland Security Committee, has set a controversial series of hearings on Muslim radicalization in the United States. Critics have accused King of unfairly targeting Muslims in the wake of the September 11, 2001 terrorist strikes, and ignoring other radical groups.
Upset with the hearings, Barnett allegedly mailed King a bloody pig’s foot and an anti-Semitic message earlier this year. The message referred to King as a “Jew,” even though he is Catholic.
Speaking to Politico on Monday, King blamed the media for their “hysterical coverage” of the hearings and said that the incident had "nothing to with the fact that she was Muslim."
“I feel sad for the woman, she was obviously deranged and had serious mental issues,” King said.
“It shows that she was capable of violence, that with much of the hysterical coverage of the hearings, the danger is setting off dangerous people like this woman,” he added. “I doubt she was watching [the hearings] on C-SPAN. She was reacting to the media and its terrible exaggerations, which can set off people who have mental issues.”