UT-Brownsville police arrested a UTB student in his late 20s Sunday afternoon after they say he called a crisis hotline at around 2 a.m. saying he had a bomb he was going to take to UTB and “blow up” a fellow student.
According to police, the caller said he was upset because the other student made a derogatory statement about him. The caller’s name will be released after he is arraigned Monday. He is currently being held in the Cameron County Detention Center in Olmito, Tex. UTB police believe this case is not related to Friday’s bomb threat at UT-Austin, but are looking at all recent similar incidents across the nation for a connection.
The caller has been charged with making a terroristic threat, a third degree felony in this case, punishable with up to 10 years in prison and a $10,000 fine, as well as all possible civil liabilities.
Police said the caller was arrested at his apartment in Harlingen, Texas, Police were able to trace the call and find out the man’s name by listening to the message on his answering machine. After cross-referencing that name with UTB records, they were able to locate the man and make the arrest. No bomb was found in the man’s apartment, and it was declared clear by 4 p.m. by the Brownsville police department bomb squad.
Assisting UTB police with the investigation and arrest were the Brownsville and Harlingen police, which includes the city of Brownsville bomb squad.
UTB police chief John Cardoza said he is very pleased with the effort of local authorities in this case.
“It was teamwork by all agencies involved,” he said.
Cardoza said his main concern throughout the investigation was the safety and welfare of all parties involved including authorities and the general public, causing him to treat the situation very carefully.
Cardoza said he stresses the importance of reporting criminal activity to ensure the safety of the public.
“”Report crime. Report concerns. Report threats,” he said.