Three Individuals Indicted in Connection with Bomb Threat Hoax at Eau Claire High School
|U.S. Attorney’s Office May 08, 2012|
Bill Nettles, United States Attorney’s Office for the District of South Carolina and Daniel E. Johnson, Fifth Circuit Solicitor, announced today in a joint press release that federal and state charges have been filed against one adult and two juveniles in to a series of bomb threats and hoax bomb devices received by Eau Claire High School in the fall of 2011 and in January 2012. In response to the bomb threats, the school enacted emergency plans, contacted law enforcement agencies, and, on at least two occasions, cancelled classes for the day. Significant numbers of law enforcement and emergency personnel responded to the bomb threats involving the hoax devices, to include federal, state, and local bomb squads and fire and other emergency management personnel who worked together to conduct emergency search and response procedures.
The charges against the three individuals result from a six-month investigation by the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force (JTTF), the Columbia Police Department, and the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division. The charges are separate as to each of the defendants, and there is no suggestion that any defendant not named in a particular set of charges had any involvement in any other part of the case.
The federal indictment charges Sidney L. Myers, age 21, of Eastover, South Carolina, with making one bomb threat against Eau Claire High School. The indictment alleges that on November 2, 2011, Myers made an anonymous telephone call to Eau Claire High School and claimed to have placed a bomb on school property, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, 844(e). In addition to the bomb threat charge, Myers is also charged with production and possession of child pornography, violations of Title 18, United States Code, Sections 2251(a) and 2252A(a)(5)(B). On the bomb threat charge, Myers faces a maximum penalty of 10 years’ imprisonment and a $250,000 fine. On the production of child pornography charges, Myers faces 15 to 30 years’ imprisonment and $250,000 fine. On possession of child pornography, he faces up to 10 years of imprisonment and a $250,000 fine. Myers was arrested on May 2, 2012, and he is being held on a $25,000 secured bond. If he posts bond, he will be placed on home confinement with electronic monitoring as required by federal law.
The Fifth Circuit Solicitor’s Office filed charges against a minor in connection with one telephonic bomb threat and two hoax bomb devices. These charges include two counts of a hoax device or replica of a destructive device or detonator; manufacture, possession, transport of or threat to use, two counts of disturbing schools, and one count of unlawful use of 911 in violation of South Carolina Code, Sections 16-23-730, 16-17-420, and 23-47-80.
Charges have also been brought by the Fifth Circuit Solicitor against another juvenile who is charged with two counts of giving false information to law enforcement in violation of South Carolina Code, Section 16-17-725.
Assistant United States Attorney Dean A. Eichelberger has been assigned the case against Myers. Assistant Solicitor Kendall Corley is handling the state charges against the juveniles.
The United States Attorney stated that all charges in these indictments are merely accusations and that all defendants are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.