A woman has been arrested after allegedly calling Boston Children’s Hospital and saying a bomb was on the way. The threat was later considered a hoax.
Katherine Levy of Westfield, Massachusetts, was taken into custody Thursday morning without incident at her home, officials said during a press conference. The 37-year-old was charged with one federal count of explosive material – intentionally making false bomb threats.
He appeared in the preliminary court on Thursday afternoon and was taken into custody for a hearing scheduled for Friday. According to the US Attorney for the District of Massachusetts, Levy faces up to 10 years in prison, three years of supervised release, and a $250,000 fine if convicted.
On August 30, a hospital employee got a call from someone who said: “There’s a bomb on the way to the hospital. You better blow everyone out, you’re sick,” Rollins said during Thursday’s press conference.
The call was reportedly in relation to the hospital’s gender multispecialty service, which the hospital describes as the safe health care it provides to its gender diverse and transgender patients and their families, Rollins said.
The children’s hospital was later put on lockdown. Several agencies responded and determined that there was no bomb.
“The bomb hoax creates fear, panic and a diversion of resources that has a real impact on our communities,” Rollins said on Thursday. “Parents working in the children’s hospital and bringing their loved ones to the children’s hospital are under a lot of stress.”
Officials said the officers considered Levy to be a suspect after obtaining and locating the caller’s phone number.
Officials said they found the phone during a search of Levi’s home on Thursday morning.
FBI Boston chief Joseph R. Bonavolonta said, “Today’s arrest should serve as a stern warning to others that threatening violence is no joke—it is a federal crime, and carries up to five years in federal prison.” It may take time.” Office during the press briefing.
Officials did not disclose a motive. Rollins said the children’s hospital has received more than a dozen threats, many related to the care it provides to its gender diverse and transgender patients. She said children’s hospitals and other hospitals that provide these types of services are able to do so “without fear”.
Rollins said his office would continue to investigate such hate crimes.
“It seems to be happening all too often – that personal, hateful beliefs and ideologies are deceived to promote,” Rollins said. “We will not standby and allow this to continue.”
Rollins said higher charges are possible.
Earlier this summer, FBI Director Christopher WrayThat Iranian-backed hackers conducted a failed cyberattack against Boston Children’s Hospital in 2021. He called it “one of the most disgusting cyber attacks” during a speech at Boston College.