Terry King—a candidate for sheriff of Alpena County, Michigan—has come under criticism and protest from the local LGBTQ community for homophobic text messages sent from his work cell phone in 2013.
The messages, which King sent to his daughter, Kimberley, in October 2013 while serving as Alpena County’s undersheriff, included a photo of two men holding hands from a wedding he was attending in St. Joseph County.
King originally took a picture of a woman whose dress was being held together with a safety pin, making fun of her.
But Kimberly noticed something the two men in the background holding hands. “Where the heck are you??? Homoland???” she asked in a text message.
“THESE guys are holding hands. Where is my fricken gun,” King texted. His daughter responded, “They kiss and stuff Ew,” King sent a second text shortly thereafter reading, “Bang bang.”
King worked for the Alpena County Sheriff’s Office until June 2019, when he faced multiple accusations of impropriety and King’s boss, Sheriff Steve Kieliszewski asked for his resignation. King has filed a wrongful termination lawsuit, alleging that he was fired for being a whistleblower.
The text messages were obtained by local activist and former Kieliszewski campaign chair Bob Reid and posted to his website, TheTruthAboutTerryKing.com. The texts began circulating on social media around June 3 after local activist and county resident Bob Reid obtained them through the Michigan Freedom of Information Act.
The website posted text messages and emails about several other issues involving King – including the lawsuit and allegations against him – as well as his browser search history, which suggests he spent a lot of time looking at Stormy Daniels porn in April of 2018.
“He didn’t just give it to a couple people,” Reid told WKBK 11. “He sent them to his wife and his daughter. It paints a different picture because it makes you think, wait a minute, he’s so comfortable with his hatred, that he shares it with his immediate family.”
King has not talked about the text messages, but he posted a video to Facebook accusing his opponent of “dirty politics.”