A man has been taken into custody in North Carolina after being identified in connection with hundreds of threatening calls to various U.S. agencies and schools, including a recent bomb threat made to Central Linn High School in Halsey.
According to a Linn County Sheriff's Office news release, 45-year-old Paul Oliver Martikainen of Bryson City, North Carolina, is facing federal charges for the threats, although specific charges were not known on Thursday. The federal complaint against Martikainen alleges that he called 442 government agencies to make threats.
Linn County Sheriff's Office deputies responded at 9:44 a.m. Oct. 29 to Central Linn to investigate a threat made over the phone. The caller referenced a "bomb," which prompted a three-hour lockdown as deputies searched the school grounds, including buildings and classrooms. No suspicious items were found.
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Deputies were able to trace the phone number to a Warrenton, Virginia, address, the news release said. An investigation revealed similar calls from the same number to New York fire departments and other government agencies, including others in Oregon. The suspect was found in Bryson City and taken into custody. The FBI has been involved in these cases.
The Linn County Sheriff's Office was assisted by the New York Police Department and the Fauquier County Sheriff's Office in Warrenton, Virginia.