For actor Tim Matheson, a joke turned very serious last month when he targeted Melania Trump on Twitter.

In late January, Matheson, 73, replied to an NBC News tweet showing First Lady Jill Biden speaking to National Guard troops in D.C. He tweeted, "So wonderful to have a First Lady with class and heart. And, can speak English!"

Tim Matheson's Melania Trump joke on Twitter

Soon after, Matheson deleted the tweet, which was captured in many screenshots. In addition, he tweeted several apologies for the joke, including one on his main page and one on a video of the former First Lady's farewell message.

He also thanked Melania for her "work" and apologized for the "stupid, ignorant, and foul remark." He added, "It was wrong, cruel and intolerant of me. I have learned a big lesson from this experience. So sorry."

Tim Matheson got death threats after Trump-Biden tweet

Twitter users were apparently less than forgiving, because, as TMZ reported, Matheson was forced to file a police report in late February after he received "escalating" death threats following the joke. The outlet said the threats ranged from "they're going to kick Tim's ass" to "pay me big bucks or I will kill you."

Tim Matheson: Melania Trump joke on Twitter got him death threats.

Matheson, known for work on Bonanza as "Griff King," The West Wing, and in Animal House, has since remained quiet on Twitter, with his apology to the former First Lady standing as his most recent tweet. See which other Bonanza actors are still living today here.

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