PITTSBURGH – A convicted child molester has agreed to plead guilty to mailing a threatening letter from jail to President Barack Obama -- albeit to the wrong address.
The plea deal was revealed Monday at a status conference on a federal indictment returned last February against Joseph Savage, 35, of West Leisenring.
Savage was in the Fayette County Prison awaiting trial in October 2012 when he sent the letter threatening to "torture and murder" the president and "to kill and to kidnap and to inflict bodily harm" on an unspecified member of the president's family.
The letter was mailed to 1400 Pennsylvania Ave. in Washington. The White House, at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave., received it anyway and turned it over to the U.S. Secret Service.
Defense attorney Jon Pushinsky said after Monday's court appearance that Savage has agreed to plead guilty on March 4 in exchange for a 2 1/2-year federal prison sentence.
Savage already is serving 12 1/2 to 25 years in the molestation case and three other cases. Under the deal, at least half -- or 15 months -- of Savage's federal sentence will run concurrently to the state sentence, meaning he'll spend no more than 15 additional months in prison for threatening the president, Pushinsky said.
The U.S. attorney's office in Pittsburgh has not disclosed the contents of the letter, beyond the description contained in the indictment.
Savage's state sentence stems from his convictions for molesting a 9-year-old Uniontown girl, exposing himself to a 10-year-old girl in neighboring North Union Township, damaging a prisoner waiting room at a district judge's office and sending a threatening letter to the state police trooper who charged him.
If Senior U.S. District Judge Maurice Cohill Jr. accepts the plea bargain, he must decide only whether Savage will receive any additional credit toward the second half of his federal sentence while he's in state prison.