LAS VEGAS (AP) – The father of a man facing a federal charge of threatening President Barack Obama said Monday that his son is mentally ill and needs treatment.

“I’m not sugarcoating it, because you don’t threaten the president of the United States,” Michael Murray told The Associated Press by telephone from Clifton Park, N.Y., where he lives.

Daniel Murray, 36, was due to appear before a federal magistrate in Las Vegas on a charge of threats against the president. The younger Murray was arrested Friday outside a hotel-casino in Laughlin, about 100 miles south of Las Vegas.

Michael Murray, a retired fire captain, said he didn’t know if his son had a lawyer.

“We’re hoping that he gets the appropriate treatment. He doesn’t accept the fact that he’s mentally ill,” Michael Murray said.

He said his son had been mentally ill for about 10 years – since about the time he left a job as a guard for an armored car service in Los Angeles and filed a disability claim for a back injury.

Daniel Murray “stopped taking his antidepressants about three years ago,” the father said.

Michael Murray said his son served 30 days this year in the Saratoga County, N.Y., jail on a misdemeanor charge for damaging a vehicle, and said he had not spoken with his son since March, when Daniel Murray headed West with money received from selling his home in Rexford, N.Y.

A federal complaint filed Thursday by the U.S. Secret Service said Daniel Murray had at least eight firearms registered to him and threatened the president while banking at Zions First National Bank in St. George, Utah.

The complaint did not say whether weapons were found when Murray was arrested. Authorities declined comment Monday.


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