Ravens owner Art Modell, who died last September at age 87, made lots of enemies when he moved the Browns to Baltimore. But Modell's FBI file, which was released by the bureau today, contains no death threats from Cleveland fans. Indeed, nothing in his career inspired menacing, racist, anti-semitic rage like Modell's defense of Ray Lewis during his 2000 murder case.
The full FBI case file can be found below.
On Feb. 14, 2000, a bail hearing was held for Ray Lewis, two weeks after he was arrested for his role in a fight that led to the stabbing deaths of two men. Art Modell flew to Atlanta to testify as a character witness on Lewis's behalf:
"He is held in highest esteem by his fellow players and by his coaches. And the mere fact there are several Baltimore Ravens players here today, voluntarily, speaks loudly [to] what they feel about Ray Lewis."
A week later, according to the FBI file, the Ravens received three postcards at their stadium, two addressed to Modell and one addressed to a player whose name is redacted, but is almost certainly Lewis). Here's the first, postmarked before Lewis's hearing, along with a transcription. (Language is explicit, and sic'd.)
YO MO- TAKE YOUR MOB OF MURDERING GHETTO GARBAGE TO HARLEM OR WATTS WHERE YOU BELONG YOU KRAZY KIKE KOCKSUCKER. NIGGERS ARE ONLY GOOD FOR RAPE ROBBERY + MURDER + THE SOONER YOU GET THIS SUBHUMAN SHIT OUT OF TOWN THE SOONER THE CRIME RATE WILL GO DOWN. IT'S A SHAME HITLER'S NOT STILL ALIVE TO PROVIDE US WITH A FINAL SOLUTION FOR ALL NIGGER PANDERING JEW JERKS LIKE YOU. YOU'RE TOO UGLY TO BE A LAMPSHADE BUT YOU + THAT REVOLTING HOPHEAD ADOPTED SON OF YOURS COULD BE RENDERED INTO SOAP FOR USE ONLY BY NIGGERS HOPE YOU HAVE A STROKE AS YOU READ THIS. WHEN THEY DUMP YOU IN THE COFFIN MAKE SURE YOU HAVE A NIGGER COCK IN YOUR MOUTH SO WE CAN RECOGNIZE YOU.
And here's the second, postmarked the day after Lewis was freed on $1 million bail.
ART- RUSHING TO ATLANTA TO SERVE AS A "CHARACTER WITNESS" FOR YOUR MURDERING GHETTO GARBAGE NIGGER THUG IS A NEW LOW EVEN FOR YOU. STARTING WITH [REDACTED] YOU'VE BOUGHT OFF WITNESSES IN SERIOUS CRIMES OR PAID OTHERS TO LIE JUST TO GET THESE GUILTY SUBHUMANS OFF. YOUR [OBSCURED] REWARD IS RAPIDLY APPROACHING YOU SLIMEY SHEENY SHIT WHORE. WE PRAY A MOB OF DOPED UP NIGGS-LED BY [REDACTED] GANG FUCK EVERY MODEL ON THE FACE OF THE EARTH TO DEATH WHILE YOU WATCH YOU KRAZY KIKE KOCKSUCKER. EVIL BASTARDS LIKE YOU PANDERING TO THESE NIGGER CRIMINAL SUBHUMANS ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR THEM GETTING AWAY WITH MURDER. CELEBRATE BLACK HISTORY MONTH BY KILLING EVERY NIGGER YOU SEE. HOPE YOU LOSE EVERY PENNY OF YOU'RE ILLGOTTEN WEALTH.
The third postcard is not included in the FBI file. A Ravens security officer gave the letters to a Baltimore PD investigator, who in turn passed it on to the FBI. An analysis turned up usable fingerprints, but the prints had no match in the bureau's database. As no follow-up letters were received, the FBI declared the case closed in August.
Here's the entire FBI file. Aside from the postcards, it contains records relating to one other incident—an extortion attempt in 1975. Modell notified authorities that someone was trying to "shake him down" over "alleged past activity on his part." Sadly, there is no further detail on that activity.