Michael Hoyt is indicted on a plot to kill Speaker Boehner (PHOTO: Hamilton County Sheriff's Office)
A former bartender at Wethering Golf and Country Club was indicted on a plot to kill House Speaker John Boehner. (FOX19 NOW)
John and Debbie Boehner (Provided)
WEST CHESTER, OH (FOX19) -
Shock and sadness set in across the gated Wetherington neighborhood Wednesday after a former longtime country club employee was federally charged with threatening to kill one of its most prominent residents, House Speaker John Boehner.
Michael Hoyt was indicted Jan. 7 after authorities say he made the threat in the fall shortly after he was fired from his job at Wetherington Country Club.
"I never saw anything that would indicate this would happen," said Darlene Todd, a country club member. "He was always very nice and he had a good work ethic. Obviously, there were things going on behind the scenes that were not noticeable."
Hoyt's bearded mug shot is not the clean-shaven, handsome bartender club members remember pouring their spirits and helping out around the restaurant.
"He never looked unkept at all, so it was very shocking to see him like that and to know that he must have spiraled down into a dark place very quickly," Todd said.
Hoyt called 911 on Oct. 29, 2014, and asked the operator to tell his father he was sorry.
Hoyt told police he was Jesus Christ, and he was going to kill Boehner because the Speaker of the House was mean to him and caused Ebola. Police found a .380 automatic gun in Hoyt's residence, and Hoyt told them he was going shoot Boehner and take off.
Officers transferred Hoyt to University of Cincinnati Emergency Psych Ward.
During the evaluation at the facility, Hoyt told FBI agents that Boehner was the devil and that the Speaker caused Hoyt to be fired from the country club. Hoyt also admitted to officials that he was treated for a psychiatric episode two years earlier and was prescribed medication that he voluntarily stopped taking after six months.
After being fired, Hoyt told FBI officials that he began hearing the devil's voice from his car radio and the radio from his home. The voices told Hoyt that Boehner was evil.
Hoyt said he often poured drinks for Boehner and could have put something in his drink previously.
A spokeswoman for Boehner told FOX19 NOW the speaker "is aware of this situation and sincerely thanks the FBI, the Capitol Police and local authorities in Ohio for their efforts.
One longtime country club member said Hoyt was a "great guy" but he seemed a bit different after he was mugged and injured.
"I think most of the members thought very highly of Mike," said George Lang, a township trustee. "About two years ago, though, according to Mike, he was mugged and had a concussion. He was just a little quirky. Nothing strange and scary, but he was a little quirky since the concussion. Most of the members were shocked by what has transpired since then.
"And for the record, I've never seen John Boehner be disrespectful to one employee," Lang continued. "Wetherington is a really great club where all the employees and members are one big family and John's always been nothing but respectful to everyone all the time."
The FBI recovered an email conversation from Hoyt addressed to Debbie Boehner, John Boehner's wife on Oct. 28, 2014.
The email read:
"Mr. Boehner, I sincerely do not want to embarrass anyone. I am willing to drop all of this if you and Dr. Bob Buring deliver my termination report to me personally, or transport me to a secure location were the three of us can have an honest conversation," Hoyt said in the email. "If I had any intention of hurting Mr. Boehner I could have poisoned his wine at Wetherington, many many times."
The email goes on to explain that Hoyt has a dog and cat at home and to not burst into the house.
Debbie Boehner replied later that morning.
"What is this about?" Mrs. Boehner said in response to the email.
40 minutes later Hoyt replied to Mrs. Boehner that if her husband took interest in anything, he would ensure his club is better than his country. Hoyt ended the email with, "Mike, your former bartender."