By Daniel Bice
Known for his incendiary rhetoric, former Milwaukee County Sheriff David A. Clarke Jr. took it a step too far over the weekend -- and was briefly banned from Twitter as a result.
CNN reported Tuesday that Clarke, a frequent surrogate for President Donald Trump, was placed in read-only mode until he deleted several tweets, including one in which he threatened to punch the media "in the nose" and "make them taste their own blood."
In the tweet, Clarke included a picture of one wrestler with his picture superimposed on it while kicking another wrestler bearing the red CNN logo. A third wrestler with the Republican president's picture on it held the CNN wrestler.
A Twitter spokeswoman said: "I can confirm the CNN story is accurate. We won't have any further details to share."
The wrestler post and two others had been removed from @SheriffClarke by Tuesday afternoon and the longtime Democratic lawman was back to doing what he loves most -- lambasting the media on Twitter.
"I will NOT be Intimidated into silence by LYING LIB MEDIA," Clarke wrote. "I will NOT be intimidated by LIBERAL hyper partisan government HACKS who weaponize government authorirty (sic) to go after people whose views they don't like. I will STAND AND FIGHT for TRUTH & what I believe is RIGHT. JOIN ME."
Clarke served as Milwaukee County sheriff from 2002 until August when he abruptly resigned to go to work for the pro-Trump super PAC America First Action as a spokesman and senior adviser. He has also created a new company called DAC Enterprises, based in Maryland.
Over the years, the ex-sheriff has used social media to try to provoke others. For instance, during the 2016 presidential campaign, he tweeted that it was time for Americans to pick up "pitchforks and torches" in response to what he called a "rigged" electoral system.
He went off most recently after several outlets posted a copy of a search warrant for Clarke's emails from March 2017.
Federal officials were looking into how Clarke and his staff handled a case in which the then-sheriff felt he was disrespected by a fellow plane passenger in January 2017. The investigation of Clarke was closed four months later.
But some media outlets did not make it clear that the search warrant came from a now-closed case, prompting Clarke's outburst.
One Twitter user told Mediaite on Tuesday that the person had complained to the social media outfit and received a message saying Clarke's account was temporarily blocked.
"We have reviewed the account you reported and have locked it because we found it to be in violation of the Twitter Rules," the email said. "If the account owner complies with our requested actions and stated policies, the account will be unlocked."
By Tuesday afternoon, Clarke was back on Twitter, having posted or retweeted five items by Tuesday afternoon.
(c)2018 the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel