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Moody takes plea deal in phony writs case

Darris Moody Darris Moody

It took more than four months, 62 federal counts and a lengthy period of pretrial detention in Buncombe County, but Darris Moody has finally acknowledged the legitimacy of the United States justice system — by signing a plea agreement related to the threats she sent to elected officials last summer.  

In August 2022 local elected officials began receiving threatening “writs” from a nonexistent court that purported to charge them with treason and environmental crimes. The writs offered bounties for those who refused to surrender themselves to a tribunal. 

A Smoky Mountain News investigation found the writs, emanating from a group called “The People’s Bureau of Investigation,” were sent to thousands of public officials, from both parties, all across the country. 

During a telephone interview with SMN prior to her Sept. 7 arrest by the FBI on 58 counts of interstate threats and one count of conspiracy to kidnap, Moody espoused “sovereign citizen” ideology and floated all manner of debunked conspiracy theories. 

After Moody was released on bond, she failed to appear at a subsequent hearing and was taken back into custody on Oct. 14. Since then, she’s made multiple pro se filings reiterating her claims that the United States government and its legal system have no jurisdiction over her. 

On Dec. 14, 2022, a superseding indictment was filed, adding four more counts of interstate threats and two new defendants, Tim Deaver and Dee Thomas Murphy. 

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Deaver, of Downer’s Grove, Illinois, appears to run the People’s Bureau of Investigation website, and told The Smoky Mountain News back in September that the threatening writs were legitimate. In December he was taken into custody. 

Murphy was taken into custody in Texas in December. 

Moody, of Haywood County, signed the agreement on Jan. 6, offering to waive her right to trial and plead guilty to interstate threats and/or conspiracy to kidnap. Details of the agreement remain sealed. 

A presentencing report will consider various factors and make a recommendation for sentencing. The maximum penalty for conspiracy to kidnap is life imprisonment. The maximum penalty for interstate threats is five years imprisonment and a $250,000 fine, plus three years supervised release. 

According to the Buncombe County Sheriff’s Office, Moody remains in custody. 

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1 comment

  • People making money off making people crazy.

    posted by Mike Goodman

    Friday, 01/13/2023

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