‘I own everything’: Leak suspect threatened to release senators’ kids’ private info, docs say

WASHINGTON — The former Democratic senate staffer charged with releasing personal information about GOP senators during Brett Kavanaugh’s hearing allegedly threatened to release more information — this time, of those senators’ children.

A former coworker spotted Jackson Cosko, 27, in the Senate office from which he had been asked to resign months earlier. A witness says he was typing on a computer before grabbing something from the desk and leaving, charging documents say.

Cosko wasn’t authorized to be in the office or to use the computer. He apparently logged in to the computer using another staffer’s credentials.

He’s been charged with sending the threatening email to that witness, whom sources tell WTOP’s Neal Augenstein is a member of New Hampshire Sen. Maggie Hassan’s staff.

The subject line of Cosko’s alleged email was “I own EVERYTHING,” according to charging documents.

In an affidavit from United States Capitol Police Cpt. Jason Bell, it read:

“If you tell anyone I will leak it all. Emails signal conversations gmails. Senators children’s health information and socials.”

Surveillance footage shows that Cosko entered the northwest door of the Dirksen Senate Office Building at approximately 10:10 p.m. after being processed through security.

He was seen leaving through the same door around 10:21 p.m., heading toward Union Station.

Cosko reportedly posted the phone number and home addresses for three Republican senators — Lindsey Graham, Mike Lee, and Orrin Hatch — as they participated in the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing for Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.

He faces five federal offenses: making public restricted personal information; making threats in interstate commerce; unauthorized access of a government computer; identity theft; and obstruction of justice/witness tampering.

He also is charged with two D.C. crimes: second-degree burglary and unlawful entry, according to a statement from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia.

According to Legistorm, a website that tracks lawmakers and Capitol Hill staffers, Cosko worked for Democratic Sen. Hassan from January 2017 to May 2018 as a legislative correspondent/systems administrator.

Cosko made his initial appearance in federal court Thursday, and was ordered held until a detention hearing Tuesday, Oct. 9.

WTOP’s Neal Augenstein contributed to this report.

Will Vitka

William Vitka is a Digital Writer/Editor for WTOP.com. He's been in the news industry for over a decade. Before joining WTOP, he worked for CBS News, Stuff Magazine, The New York Post and wrote a variety of books—about a dozen of them, with more to come.

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