NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

Local News

February 11, 2014

Man goes to prison for threatening judge

BRENTWOOD, N.H. — A Manchester man will spend seven to 14 years in prison for threatening to kill a Derry family court judge.

Gregory Gifford, 49, was sentenced Friday by Rockingham Superior Court Judge Kenneth McHugh on three counts of threatening a government official.

A jury found the former Derry man guilty in November of threatening 10th Circuit Court Judge Moore, who had handled a custody case involving Gifford’s young son.

He threatened the judge after the custody of the child was granted to another relative, according to court documents.

Gifford first threatened Moore on June 22, 2012, when he called deputy court clerk Barbara Santos and said he wanted to kill the judge.

Gifford then sent threatening emails on Oct. 25, 2012, to Capt. Vern Thomas and Capt. George Feole, both of the Derry Police Department.

He called Moore “a dead man” in the email to Thomas and said the judge “stole my son,” according to secret indictments handed down in the case.

In the email to Feole, he accused Moore of “kidnapping my son without due process or a fair hearing,” the indictments said.

Each of the three felony counts was punishable by three a half to seven years in prison.

Gifford received the maximum prison time on two counts, but received a suspended sentence on the third count. That prison time was suspended for 10 years. He received credit for 306 days served.

Gifford was ordered not to have any contact with Moore and to receive anger management counseling.

The case was prosecuted by the New Hampshire Attorney General’s Office.

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