Darby man arrested for threatening president


HAMILTON, Mont. - Earlier this year, NBC Montana reported that an internal investigation was under way at the Valley Veterans Center in Hamilton. Monday the story became much larger.

Officials have revealed that the investigation was centered on 43-year-old Daniel Rachell, a Certified Claims Agent for the Valley Veterans Center.

Now the Darby man is in custody, accused by federal agents of threatening to kill the President of the United States.

We read through the complaint filed by Secret Service agents. In a 12-page document, a Secret Service agent outlines his case against Rachell.

He quotes an anonymous source whom claims Daniel Rachell outlined the Ravalli County location for an attack on the presidential motorcade.

The same source claims Rachell bragged about knowing where to place explosives to kill police and Secret Service agents and claimed he had trained his wife to back him up in the assassination attempt.

This isn't the first time Rachell's been investigated. The Secret Service document claims similar complaints got him in trouble in 2011.

In Fairview Heights Illinois, police got a tip that Rachell was stockpiling weapons and planned to kill the President. Federal investigators monitored his cell phone. He was picked up in Texas and involuntarily committed to a psychiatric hospital.

Rachell denied making the threats against the President.

The 2011 investigation and psychiatric commitment wasn't enough to deny him a Montana permit to carry a concealed firearm. According to the Secret Service complaint, Rachel obtained a permit from the Ravalli County Sheriff's Department in January of this year and carried a weapon to work at the Valley Veterans Center.

The Veterans Center serves more than 2000 area veterans a year.

Acting as their agent, Daniel Rachell was given Power of Attorney to speak with government agents about the contents of their personal records. Now we're told Rachell was able to take veterans' personal records and documents home with him.

Two of those clients contacted NBC Montana. They tell us they're worried about personal confidentiality. They want their personal records returned, but with Rachell in custody, and their records taken away from the Veterans Center, they can't get them.

We took their concerns to officials at the Valley Veterans Center. We were told to advise any concerned veteran to contact them directly at the Valley Veterans Center in Hamilton and they will work to retrieve the missing files.