West Haven Woman Admits Making Bomb Threats Against Connecticut Courthouses
Deirdre Daly, Acting United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced that Jennifer Chirico, 31, of West Haven, pleaded guilty Frioday before U.S. District Judge Janet C. Hall in New Haven to making bomb threats against courthouses in Connecticut.
According to court documents and statements made in court, on the morning of March 8, 2013, she and another individual placed seven anonymous threat calls to courthouses, law enforcement agencies and media outlets, all claiming that bombs had been deployed and were going to explode that morning at one or more courthouses in Connecticut.
All seven calls mentioned or described the Waterbury Superior Court as either the one location, or as one of multiple locations, where bombs were about to explode.
The investigation, which included analysis of the originating phone numbers of the calls and previous police reports associated with the phone numbers, pointed to Chirico as a suspect. A review of the Waterbury court docket records for March 8, 2013, disclosed that Chirico had been scheduled to appear at a hearing that day in a pending criminal case. Investigating agents then located and interviewed Chirico, who confessed to making the bomb threat calls and explained that she had done so to cause court delays and thereby avoid being late for her own court appearance.
She was arrested on May 17, 2013, and she pleaded guilty Friday to one count of maliciously conveying false information.
Judge Hall has scheduled sentencing for February 19, 2014, at which time Chirico faces a maximum term of imprisonment of 10 years.
This matter is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Joint Terrorism Task Force, the U.S. Marshals Service and the Connecticut State Police. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Henry K. Kopel.