Terrorism charge for man accused of threatening Stafford Co. school

A Fredericksburg, Virginia, man is now facing a terrorism charge, among many others, after allegedly threatening an elementary school.

On Tuesday, the Stafford County Sheriff’s Office said James Hash II, 34, had been arrested with the help of Fredericksburg police after an investigation into a series of robo calls placed to 911 operators.

The fake bomb threats caused a lockdown at Conway Elementary School in Fredericksburg, and led to a large law enforcement response on Wednesday, Sept. 7. Hash is also accused of making threats to multiple Virginia courthouses.

According to a news release from the Fredericksburg Police Department, Hash used a disconnected cellular device to report false incidents around 30 times between April and August while obfuscating his voice with a Text-to-Speech program.

Thank-you cards to the Stafford County Sheriff’s Office. (Courtesy Stafford County Sheriff’s Office)

He was identified as a suspect using cell tower records obtained through search warrants. The devices he allegedly used were seized from his home, police said.
SCSO has charged Hash with threats to bomb and attempted acts of terrorism. Fredericksburg police have added additional charges related to threatening school property, threatening to bomb or burn a building, and falsely summoning police.

“These robo calls used many law enforcement resources over the past five months,” Fredericksburg police said in a statement, adding that the department is “relieved Hash will no longer victimize city residents and waste valuable resources.”

Hash is being held in jail without bond. He is set to be in court Oct. 25 for the Stafford County charges and does not yet have a date for the Fredericksburg charges.

Meanwhile, the sheriff’s office said it’s received about a hundred thank-you cards from grateful elementary schoolers.

John Aaron

John Aaron is a news anchor and reporter for WTOP. After starting his professional broadcast career as an anchor and reporter for WGET and WGTY in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, he went on to spend several years in the world of sports media, working for Comcast SportsNet, MLB Network Radio, and WTOP.

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