WASHINGTON - A man has been arrested for allegedly threatening to murder African-Americans at Howard University.
The suspect has been identified as 24-year-old John Edgar Rust.
According to court documents, Rust made the threatening statement on November 11, 2015. The statement appeared on both the websites 4Chan and Reddit.
The statement came around the same time the University of Missouri campus in Columbia, Missouri was experiencing racial unrest. An affidavit suggests the situation at that school had had motivated Rust to write the statement. You can read part of the statement below.
Warning: some readers may find it disturbing.
“I left MU [University of Missouri] yesterday because I couldn’t put up with it anymore. I go home to Maryland and what do I see? The same old s***. Turn on the news and it’s always the n***** causing trouble everywhere. So I’ve decided. Any n***** left at Howard University after 10 tomorrow will be the first to go. And any of those cheapskate n***** who try to get out using the metro will regret that choice real fast.”
After the threat was made, authorities determined the identity of the IP Address that was associated with the person who wrote the post about Howard online.
They learned the IP Address was assigned to a Panera Bread in Alexandria. Authorities then went through the restaurant’s router logs and discovered Rust had used multiple devices at the restaurant at the time the threats were made online.
On top of that, police say they also learned Rust used his credit at the same time at the same location.
Authorities eventually interviewed Rust and searched through some of his electronic devices before they determined he should be charged in the case.
Rust has been charged with the transmission in interstate commerce of a communication containing threats to injure the person of another. He faces five years in prison if convicted.
He will be in federal court in Alexandria on Thursday.
This is not the first time Rust has run into trouble. He is a sex offender too. In 2012, he was convicted of indecent liberties with a child by custodian and aggravated sexual battery.
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