Metro Weekly

Texas Man Jailed for Threatening LGBTQ Health Center Doctor

Matthew Lindner has been sentenced to three months in jail for threatening a doctor who treats transgender patients.

Fenway Institute, home to the National LGBTQIA+ Health Education Center – Photo: Monika M. Wahi/Wikimedia

A Texas man has been sentenced to three months in prison, with three years of supervised release, for threatening a Boston-area doctor affiliated with the National LGBTQIA+ Health Education Center.

Matthew Jordan Lindner, 39, of Comfort, Texas, was sentenced last week by Senior U.S. District Judge William G. Young, of the District of Massachusetts, after pleading guilty to one count of interstate transmission of threatening communication. Lindner was also ordered to pay restitution of $2,986, according to a press release from the U.S. Department of Justice. 

In August 2022, inaccurate information began circulating online regarding surgical procedures that were allegedly being performed on gender-nonconforming children by doctors at Boston Children’s Hospital.

Chief among the accusations were claims that the hospital was performing “gender-affirming hysterectomies” on young girls, based on a video showing a gynecologist explaining the procedure.

After the right-wing Libs of TikTok account shared a post featuring a clip from the video and linking to an article from The Post Millennial on the hospital’s gender-affirming care options, the hospital was inundated with threats of violence and online harassment.

But, as reported by USA Today, the claims made about Boston Children’s Hospital’s health services were untrue.

The hospital’s website states that gender-affirming surgical interventions are only offered to those 18 years and older. Patients wishing to undergo such procedures must submit three letters of recommendation from a doctor, a therapist, and a mental health professional affirming that the person has lived in their desired gender identity for at least 12 months, understand the ramifications of any surgical care, and have displayed “persistent, well-documented, gender dysphoria.”

Armed with misinformation about the hospital’s procedures, Lindner called the Boston-based National LGBTQIA+ Health Education Center on August 31, 2022, and left a threatening voicemail targeting one of the Center’s affiliated doctors, conflating the center, which is housed within Fenway Health Community Health Center, with Boston Children’s Hospital.

According to federal prosecutors, in the voicemail, Lindner reportedly said, “You sick motherfuckers, you’re all gonna burn,” adding that there was a group of people headed over to “handle” the doctor in question. 

“You signed your own warrant, lady,” Lindner said. “Castrating our children. You’ve woken up enough people. And upset enough of us. And you signed your own ticket. Sleep well, you fucking c**t.”

As reported, Lindner tried to contact the victim multiple times after his initial call to the health center, even attempting to call the doctor’s former medical practice and the university where the doctor was a faculty member. 

Lindner was arrested and charged in December 2022, eventually deciding to enter a plea rather than stand trial.

Prosecutors hailed the sentence as a victory.

“This office will aggressively investigate and prosecute acts of hate and intimidation,” Acting U.S. Attorney Joshua Levy said in a statement. “Threatening a medical doctor providing essential care to children is deplorable. No one in this country should live in fear for their safety because of their identity, gender, race, religion or beliefs. Full stop.”

“Imagine the terror of having your life threatened for just doing your job,” Jodi Cohen, the special agent in charge of the FBI Boston Division, said in a statement. Matthew Lindner accosted a physician for doing exactly that…. Nobody should have to fear becoming the target of vitriol-fueled violence.”

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