Student arrested in connection with UMass Boston bomb threats
BOSTON (MyFoxBoston.com) -- A UMass Boston student was arrested Wednesday after police linked him to two phoned-in bomb threats to the campus made five days apart.
Between 12:35 and 12:45 p.m. on April 17 and April 22, a man called the reception desk at Wheatley Hall, an academic building on campus, stating that there was a bomb in the building and it should be evacuated. The first time, police and bomb-sniffing dogs were used to sweep the building after evacuating it.
Police were able to track the first call to a pay phone outside the Davis MBTA station and the second from a pay phone on Tremont Street near the Park Street MBTA station. After looking at surveillance video from the area at the time and consulting with UMass Boston administrators, investigators identified 29-year-old Dean Beckford of Somerville, a senior, and brought him in for questioning after he arrived on campus roughly 35 minutes after the second call was placed on Wednesday.
Beckford allegedly told UMass Boston police that he was "not doing so good" in his classes, but did not address any bomb threats, according to the Suffolk County District Attorney Daniel Conley.
In court on Wednesday, Beckford was charged with two counts of making a bomb threat and held on $20,000 cash bail. A judge also ordered him to wear a GPS tracking device and surrender his passports to the court if he posts bail.