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Alaska State Attorney Under Investigation For Tweeting That Drag Queen Should Be 'Burned To Death'

Alaska State Attorney Under Investigation For Tweeting That Drag Queen Should Be 'Burned To Death'
Neil Godwin/Future via Getty Images

A recent investigation by The Guardian has revealed an Alaska assistant attorney general used a pseudonym to publish an abundant amount of homophobic, transphobic, antisemitic, misogynistic and violent hate speech tweets as a member of a far-right Mormon White nationalist group.

The man in question is Matthias Cicotte, who worked with the Alaska Department of Law as an assistant attorney general in the Civil Division for nearly a decade, including for several civil rights cases.

Researcher's found several clues to link Cicotte from the Twitter Alias, J. Reuben Clark, the name of a noted Mormon leader and the namesake for Brigham Young University's law school, Cicotte's alma mater.

Among the clues in the since deleted tweets, which were archived by The Guardian, linking Cicotte to the J. Rueben Clark Twitter handle included the length of his marriage, the dates of his first home purchase, and identifying past educators.

The content of the tweets range from anti-semitic conspiracy theories, condemning The Civil Rights Act of 1964, as well as promoting Deseret nationalism, a movement primarily run by right-wing Mormons and known for trolling left-leaning Mormons on social media.

In 2017 the J. Reuben Clark Twitter page called for the execution of a drag queen, following a drag queen story hour in Long Beach, California.

"This demon should be burned to death and everyone responsible for that library event should be in prison."

He unleashed more violent, transphobic views in a subsequent tweet in 2019.

"People who encourage a kid to think he's a different sex than what he is (including parents) go to jail for child abuse."
"People who perform or abet sex change operations on kids get the death penalty."

Cicotte also used his Twitter alias to defend Kyle Rittenhouse, who murdered two people in Kenosha, Wisconsin and James Fields, who killed Heather Heyer when driving his car into counterprotesters at a White supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia in 2017, claiming:

"The justice system will fail. He's not a cop, he's gonna get screwed like James Fields."
"If he somehow gets off I'll change my tune."

When presented with the evidence against Cicotte, Cori Mills, Alaska's deputy attorney general shared a statement.

"The department of law takes the allegations raised here seriously, and we uphold the dignity and respect of all individuals and ask that all of our employees do the same."
"Having just learned about this late last week, we are gathering information and conducting a review. Since this involves personnel issues, we are very limited in our ability to comment further."

Cicotte has yet to comment on the allegations, but the people of Alaska, and Twitter, are not staying silent.

Matt Acuña Buxton, Editor and journalist of the Alaska based blog, The Midnight Sun, tweeted The Guardian's exposé, including sharing some of the most damning contents of the article, on his Twitter page.

Buxton's Twitter followersand elsewhere also condemned Cicotte's bigotry.

The American Civil Liberties Union of Alaska called for an "investigation and audit."

ACLU spokesperson Megan Edge said in a statement while state employees have a right to free speech, Cicotte's involvement in civil rights cases poses a problem.

"It isn't the government's job to police speech made in a person's private life or improperly use it as a justification for firing, retaliating, or taking other action against an employee."
"However, the statements revealed by this report make us question the extent to which these bigoted ideas are reflected in Cicotte's professional conduct, given his role and involvement in cases where the civil rights of incarcerated people are at issue."

Grace Lee, a spokeswoman for the Alaska Department of Law would not tell TheAnchorage Daily News whether or not Cicotte has been suspended or remains working in the wake of the investigation.

But The Alaska Department of Law said Thursday it is removing Cicotte from participating in any legal cases.