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'It's appalling': Officials react to learning Cornerstone Chapel was on Loudoun 'hit list'

A whistleblower in the Loudoun Love Warriors Facebook group sent 7News a list that allegedly targets parents who have spoken out about education issues in Loudoun County. (7News)
A whistleblower in the Loudoun Love Warriors Facebook group sent 7News a list that allegedly targets parents who have spoken out about education issues in Loudoun County. (7News)
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There is new reaction to 7News’s exclusive reporting that showed how some Loudoun County residents’ lives were threatened in a Facebook group that appears to include members associated with a number of elected officials and candidates.

Members of the Loudoun Love Warriors Facebook group have also tried to get people in trouble with their employers after speaking at school board meetings.

A whistleblower sent 7News a list that allegedly targets more than one hundred people, including elected officials, Cornerstone Chapel church, and its new school that’s expected to open in the county this year.

“Our church, and others, have been targeted simply for our faith and values,” Cornerstone Chapel’s Senior Pastor Gary Hamrick told 7News in a statement. “It is ironic that those who espouse ‘tolerance’ the most, are actually some of the most intolerant people toward those of us with different views and values.”

RELATED | Loudoun social media group, some allegedly tied to elected officials, threaten residents

Former U.S. Congressional candidate Hung Cao’s name is on the list, too. Cao attends Cornerstone Chapel.

“I think it's appalling. I fought for freedom around the world and never once did I think that this would happen in the United States,” said Cao.

County Supervisor Kristen Umstattd, who is not associated with the Loudoun Love Warriors Facebook group, is the first county official to speak out against the group’s alleged activities in an on-camera interview with 7News.

“I find it outrageous that any group would target a church,” said Umstattd. “I was just appalled to see that any church anywhere in the county and this one in my district was being targeted. It is inexcusable. No one should ever target a church. We have had way too much violence against churches in this country already, against synagogues, against mosques. We need to protect our institutions, including churches, synagogues, and mosques, regardless of religion. We cannot keep having people putting churches into mean girl burn books, for example. It’s just intolerable.”

SEE ALSO | Loudoun County sheriff investigates threats made in 'Loudoun Love Warriors' Facebook group

Umstattd represents Leesburg, the town where the church is located.

“I was really shocked at the level of discourse in that [Loudoun Love Warriors] chat group,” Umstattd added. “The violence that was being advocated, the ruination of people's livelihoods and of the people themselves, that was being advocated, not just by one member of that group, but by several members of that group. There is no place for that in this county or in a civilized society. It is an un-American effort. And it really is appalling.”

It appears the same person who provided the list to the whistleblower also talked about curb-stomping Elicia Brand in the Loudoun Love Warriors Facebook group.

“Threatening me - threatening to curb stomp me, it is really, really horrible,” Loudoun County parent Elicia Brand told 7News.

Brand says she is Jewish.

“If you look to the Southern Poverty Law Center, they identified curb stopping, the idea of curb stopping with the neo-Nazi movement in this country and to see people in this county advocating for the curb stomping of anyone, but especially a Jewish woman is absolutely horrific. I'm just floored by all the hatred that was in that group. But there is no excuse for that kind of call to violence.”

Virginia State Senate candidate Juan Pablo Segura, who has a three-week-year-old son, intends to pursue legal action against one of the members of the Loudoun Love Warrior’s Facebook group, which he says threatened his family with violence.

“This group of people have actually targeted outspoken parents and threatened them with violence,” Segura said. “And that's absolutely horrendous, including myself. These Loudoun Love Warriors have actually used a real estate system to identify where my family and I live here, which is incredibly scary. They actually have also threatened my family with violence.”

“The fact that this conversation is documented, it happened,” added Segura. “This is not a fabrication. These people spoke and said these things, threatened my family, the parents that were standing up for more accountability, more transparency, more safety in our schools. I think this is a dangerous trend and a combination of factors that has to end. And if people aren't condemning this behavior and these activities, then we know that they're part of the problem, not part of the solution.”

Members of the Loudoun Love Warriors Facebook group also talked about getting people fired from their jobs.

And one person in the group wrote, “If it’s a misdemeanor no one will prosecute me anyway, right?”

In December, Loudoun County Commonwealth’s Attorney Buta Biberaj sent judges a memo announcing changes to the prosecution of misdemeanors.

“I would hope that Ms. Biberaj and also the sheriff's candidate [Craig Buckley] would make it very clear to the public that they will apply the law with a fair eye to justice,” said Umstattd. “The fact that this group was gloating over the fact that they would not be prosecuted under the current Commonwealth's Attorney, that if this sheriff's candidate were elected, the tides would turn. For law enforcement to allow those kinds of claims and political favoritism to go forward without a clear repudiation, I think is dangerous. So, I would hope that both Ms. Biberaj and Mr. Buckley would come out with strong statements renouncing those statements that those advocating violence would not be prosecuted and allowed.”

READ MORE | 'It's shocking'| Youngkin responds to Loudoun Love Warriors' threats against community


After Loudoun County resident Mark Winn spoke at a school board meeting in December 2022, one person in the “Loudoun Love Warriors" said they wanted to find Winn’s employer and hold the company accountable until he is fired. That same person and others wrote:

  • “Mark Winn. I’m gonna find his employer.”
  • “And holding that company accountable until he is fired.”
  • “Lets make him unemployable by love or by force.”
  • “Wish I had footage of every person who clapped for him and give them the same ousting that Winn is about to.”
  • “I want to contact his employer to do just that. Ruin his livelihood.”
  • “Say goodbye to your job f***** [middle finger emoji].”
  • “I want every single person who clapped for that ousted en masse and their livelihoods ruined:).”

“It shocked me,” Winn said when he learned of the specific messages in a 7News interview.

What shocked Winn, even more, was a series of messages from people in the “Loudoun Love Warriors," who wrote:

  • “Im telling you. SOMETHING has to happen to one of them.”
  • “Something public and permanent.”
  • “Lines drawn in the cement.”
  • “Lives needs to be ruined beyond repair.”
  • “Lets actually destroy them. Grind them.”
  • “If he had said that s*** about black kids or autistic kids I would shoot him.”
  • “We REALLY need to find this guy.”
  • “You guys need to stop protesting and start fighting back against these people Time to just do something different to shut them down.”
  • “F*** just getting him [fired].”
  • “Im soooo ready to show up with guns lol.”
  • “His life needs to be PERMANENTLY disassembled.”

Despite the violent comments, a Loudoun County real estate agent appears to have posted Winn’s address in the “Loudoun Love Warriors” group.


The “Loudoun Love Warriors” group includes people who appear to be associated with Loudoun County Commonwealth’s Attorney Buta Biberaj, County Supervisor Juli Briskman, School Board Chair Ian Serotkin, school board member Brenda Sheridan, school board member Atoosa Reaser, school board member Erika Ogedegbe, school board candidate Anne Donohue, sheriff candidate Craig Buckley, and Chair Phyllis Randall. None of these elected officials personally made any threats.

Every Loudoun County elected official and candidate who appears to have associations with members of this Facebook group refused to answer questions on camera from 7News on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday. However, some issued statements after the story ran Tuesday.

“Violent threats are never acceptable and at times can be criminal. I personally condemn all violent language and my office will be investigating whether a crime was committed. Due to the possibility of a criminal investigation, I can not comment further at this time," Biberaj said in a statement to 7News.

In a statement to 7News, Randall stated, “No threats of violence are ever appropriate in any way, in any place, at any time, from anyone. I strongly condemn any use of violent language in any capacity. Those that use violent language are not welcome in the Loudoun Democratic Party.”

Buckley released this statement to 7News stating that he condemns violence:

“As a career law enforcement official, I’ve seen how violent speech can spur violent actions. Violent threats in any form will not be tolerated, especially those intended to inhibit First Amendment free speech rights of those we might not agree with. I condemn all speech that threatens violence," said Buckley.

“Although I have no knowledge of the incidents to which you are referring, I fully condemn any and all threats of violence, harassment, and intimidation,” Reaser told 7News in an email after 7News requested an interview with Reaser.

After 7News requested an interview with Briskman, she told 7News in an email that “I will not be commenting for your story.”

"I am not familiar with the Facebook group you cite - "Loudoun Love Warriors." As a long-term resident and the Commonwealth's Attorney for Loudoun County, I hope for meaningful dialogue and less rhetoric in social media. One's First Amendment rights are vital to democracy and our core principles of freedom and justice in America," Biberaj said in a statement to 7News after the story aired. "I have sworn to uphold the United States Constitution and will do so with every fibre of my being. However, if anyone makes threats which cross into being unlawful, I have faith that our local law enforcement is equipped to investigate the matters. If their investigation results in findings of violations of criminal law, then the legal process will be initiated and take its course."

“As a School Board member, I and my colleagues have been the subject of countless death threats and other violent acts. Any violent language or threats used anywhere in any capacity is abhorrent and is against the principles of our democracy. I do not condone any such behavior or anyone I associate with making or tolerating such threats," Serotkin said.

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"A news story yesterday reported allegations of threats made against Loudoun County residents in a Facebook group chat. Before yesterday, I was not aware the group existed and I have never been a member. I condemn in the strongest possible terms violence or threats of violence from any source and on any medium. I intend to keep my campaign focused on building community and consensus to make decisions in the best interests of LCPS students," At-Large Loudoun County School Board Candidate Anne Donohue told 7News in a statement on May 10.

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