Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) Chief Operating Officer, Richard Hornsby, is facing felony charges after threatening to kill former acting director, Edward DeMarco, and then kill himself. Hornsby was angered by an issue relating to negative job performance and made violent remarks regarding his elimination on April 29 to another employee.
The police report filed after the incident states Hornsby said he would “blow his (DeMarco’s) brains out and then off himself.” After learning of the threat against DeMarco, he was escorted from the agency to a secured location.
According to the Wall Street Journal, the incident occurred only two days before DeMarco was scheduled to retire. Since it happened so near to his retirement, you cannot help but wonder why Hornsby chose this particular time to make such a threat, given that DeMarco would have been out of the office shortly, and his performance would no longer matter.
Hornsby is arrested, released on bond
Hornsby was arrested and appeared before D.C. Superior Court on April 30. He was subsequently released on bond with a restraining order in place preventing him from approaching DeMarco. It also prevents him from assaulting, harassing, threatening, or stalking DeMarco.
Hornsby is still facing felony charges of threatening to kidnap or injure a person. His hearing has been set for May 14. One would think that someone who has been a business professional as long as Hornsby would know better than to make such serious threats. Prior to working for FHFA, Hornsby worked for 26 years at the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco. In those 26 years, there must have been people on his team who performed less than optimal, so why make such threats, now?
Melvin Watt has taken over Hornsby’s duties as he was already on board with the FHFA to take over DeMarco’s duties when he retired. The air must be thick over at the FHFA right now.