Internet-Based Threat against University Results in Arrest
Los Angeles: On December 8, 2007 the Los Angeles Police Department's Major Crimes Division arrested 21-year old Carlos Huerta for making criminal threats. The senior at Loyola Marymount University was taken into custody at 10:15 this evening near his apartment on campus.
Huerta is linked to a threat that was posted on Juicycampus.com, an anonymous blog primarily used by college students. LMU Public Safety officials contacted the LAPD at 11:30 this morning and reported the threat. The suspect had claimed he would shoot and kill as many people as possible on campus before being incapacitated or killed by the police.
Working with the LMU Department of Public Safety, Major Crimes investigators along with the Computer Crimes Unit were able to determine the threat had come from the computer registered to the suspect. Students, faculty and staff were notified by the LMU emergency communications call-all system with a voicemail alerting them to the threat.
According to Deputy Chief Michael Downing, head of the LAPD Counterterrorism and Criminal Intelligence Bureau, "There was never an indication the threat made was a valid one, and there is no on-going threat to LMU."
This is the second criminal threat investigation the LAPD's Major Crimes Division has handled since a shooting at a shopping mall in Omaha, Nebraska on December 5, 2007.
Based on information provided to the Western Australia Police Force by the LAPD, the Victoria Police Force arrested 20-year old Jarrad Willis of Melbourne. He was taken into custody and charged with the criminal offense of "Creating A False Belief," a violation of Australian Law. Evidence found at Willis home implicated him as the person who posted a threat against the Grove shopping center.
"As was the case involving LMU, there was never any real threat to the Grove," said Chief Downing. "What is clear however is that we take any threat seriously and will quickly respond, track down those responsible for sending the messages, and we will arrest them."
Anyone with information regarding this incident, is asked to call LAPD Major Crimes Division at 213-485-2000. During off-hours or on weekends call the 24-hour toll free number at 1-877-LAWFULL (529-3855).