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Sen. Cory Gardner says his family was 'doxxed,' wife was sent graphic beheading video

Senator: Family was doxxed, wife got beheading video
Credit: Al Drago, Getty Images
Sen. Cory Gardner, R-Colo., speaks beside Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wy., Senate Majority Whip Sen. John Cornyn R-Texas, and Senate Majority Leader Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-KY., during a news conference, following the weekly Senate Republican's policy luncheon, on Capitol Hill, on July 24, 2018 in Washington.

The names and addresses of Sen. Cory Gardner's family members were publicly shared online, and his wife was sent a text with a video attached, which showed a graphic beheading, his office confirmed to USA TODAY Sunday.  

It is not clear if the text and release of personal information were related, or if they were tied to Gardner's vote in favor of confirming Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court.

The story was first reported by Fox News. Gardner spokesman Casey Contres confirmed to USA TODAY that all of the details in a tweet from Fox News reporter Chad Pergram summarizing the story were accurate. Contres did not offer any further details. 

Several Republican members of the Senate Judiciary Committee had their private information made public  – an act known as "doxxing" – in recent weeks.

Jackson A. Cosko, 27, was arrested last week for allegedly doxxing Sens. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., Mike Lee, R-Utah, and Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, by publishing their names and addresses on Wikipedia. Cosko, a former aide to Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee, D-Texas, faces several charges, including "making public restricted personal information" and "unauthorized access to a government computer."

Gardner is not a member of the Judiciary Committee, but he was sent an anonymous letter alleging Kavanaugh shoved a woman against a wall in Washington, D.C., while he was drunk in 1998. 

Kavanaugh, who was questioned about the allegation by Judiciary Committee investigators, called it "total Twilight Zone.'"

"We're dealing with an anonymous letter about an anonymous person and an anonymous friend," he told the committee leadership in a telephone call. "It's ridiculous."