Man in custody after threats to Obama, mall

  • Article by: Star Tribune
  • Updated: January 30, 2009 - 11:13 PM

Man suspected of megamall threat surrenders.

A 20-year-old southwestern Colorado man has surrendered after being indicted on charges of threatening to kill President Obama and blow up the Mall of America in Bloomington.

Timothy Ryan Gutierrez, of Cortez, Colo., surrendered Thursday at the FBI's office in Durango and was being held without bail, the U.S. attorney's office said. Gutierrez was indicted Tuesday in federal court in Denver. He faces one count each of transmission of threats and falsely threatening to use explosives.

Gutierrez sent an e-mail to the FBI eight days before Obama was inaugurated, the indictment alleges, and wrote: "I'm going to assassinate the new president of the United States of America. PS you have 48 hours to stop it from happening."

Federal court records also say he e-mailed the FBI with a threat against the mall: "I have rigged 40 pounds of C4 [a moldable plastic explosive] ... and my favorite TNT to 7 cars outside the Mall of America."

Mall officials were "notified immediately" by the FBI and Bloomington police of the threat, said Maureen Bausch, the mall's executive vice president of business development. The mall was given the all clear after 16 to 18 hours, Bausch said, once it was determined "the threat wasn't valid" and a search turned up nothing suspicious.

PAUL WALSH, ASSOCIATED PRESS

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