Home Boston Press Releases 2013 Harvard Student Charged with Bomb Hoax

Harvard Student Charged with Bomb Hoax

U.S. Attorney’s Office December 17, 2013
  • District of Massachusetts (617) 748-3100

BOSTON—A Harvard student was named today in a criminal complaint alleging that he was responsible for yesterday’s bomb threats at Harvard University.

It is alleged that Eldo Kim, 20, of Cambridge, e-mailed several bomb threats to offices associated with Harvard University, including the Harvard University Police Department and the Harvard Crimson, the student-run daily newspaper. Kim will have an initial appearance in U.S. District Court before United States Magistrate Judge Judith G. Dein on December 18.

According to the complaint, on December 16, 2013, at approximately 8:30 a.m., the Harvard University Police Department, two officials of Harvard University, and the president of the Harvard Crimson received identical e-mail messages bearing a subject line that read “bombs placed around campus.” The complaint alleges that the bomb threats specified four buildings on the Harvard campus—the Science Center, Sever Hall, Emerson Hall, and Thayer Hall. The complaint quotes the e-mail messages as stating the following: “shrapnel bombs placed in science center, sever hall, emerson hall, thayer hall, 2/4. guess correctly. be quick for they will go off soon."

According to the complaint, the FBI responded immediately to the threats, in coordination with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives; the United States Secret Service; the Harvard University Police Department; the Cambridge Police Department; the Boston Police Department; and the Massachusetts State Police. Dozens of law enforcement officers, along with numerous other first responders, such as firefighters of the Cambridge Fire Department, immediately went to the vicinity of the buildings specified in the e-mails. The complaint further states that each of the Harvard buildings named in the threatening e-mails was immediately evacuated. Over the course of the next several hours, bomb technicians and hazmat officers conducted thorough sweeps of each of the four buildings. Law enforcement personnel ultimately concluded that no explosive devices had been placed in any of the four buildings

The maximum penalties under the bomb hoax statute, are five years in prison, three years of supervised release, and a $250,000 fine.

United States Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz and Vincent Lisi, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Field Division, made the announcement today. The case is being handled by Assistant U.S. Attorney John A. Capin.

The details contained in the complaint are allegations. The defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.