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Press Release

Stalker Arrested for Cyberstalking and Transmitting Interstate Threats to University of Arizona Student

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Arizona

TUCSON, Ariz. – Caleb Alfred Tifft, 29, of Tucson, was arrested on May 8, 2024, on a federal indictment warrant by the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Southern Arizona Violent Crime and Gang Task Force on charges of Cyberstalking and Transmitting Interstate Threats, for stalking and threatening a student at the University of Arizona.

On February 7, 2024, Tifft is alleged to have transmitted a threat in interstate commerce when he sent a message via Facebook Messenger to the victim, stating “Think I’ll just go rape and kill a girl at this point. I give up. I’m the bad guy.” The next day, Tifft was served with an Injunction Against Harassment, which prohibited contact with the victim. Tifft was also served with a 12-month Exclusionary Order from all University of Arizona properties.

Tifft continued to cyberstalk the victim when on March 1, 2024, he made an anonymous 911 call to the Pima County Sherriff’s Department (PCSD), stating that his friend had sent him a message that the friend was going to commit a mass shooting and that the friend was at the “[specific University of Arizona] building.” The call to PCSD was disconnected before it was able to be transferred to the University of Arizona Police Department (UAPD). However, PCSD provided the phone number to UAPD and UAPD recognized that the phone number belonged to Tifft.

Later that day, UAPD received a call from a Tucson Police Department dispatcher who transferred a 911 caller. A male caller, later identified as Tifft, told the UAPD dispatcher he was calling because a friend of his “sent some threatening messages about wanting to commit a mass shooting.” Tifft said the friend was “[the victim]” and confirmed the victim was at the “[specific University of Arizona] building.” The call was then disconnected. A UAPD officer familiar with Tifft from having interacted with him previously listened to the recorded call and determined the voice matched Tifft’s. The telephone number associated with the call was the same number used to contact the PCSD. Tifft turned himself in to the FBI on an indictment warrant.

A conviction for Cyberstalking and Transmitting Interstate Threats each carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison, a fine of $250,000, or both, and a maximum term of three years of supervised release.

An indictment is simply a method by which a person is charged with criminal activity and raises no inference of guilt. An individual is presumed innocent until evidence is presented to a jury that establishes guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation and the University of Arizona Police Department, as part of the FBI’s Southern Arizona Violent Crime and Gang Task Force, conducted the investigation in this case. Assistant U.S. Attorney Adam Rossi, District of Arizona, Tucson, is handling the prosecution.

CASE NUMBER:           CR-24-02373-TUC-SHR
RELEASE NUMBER:    2024-067_Tifft

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Public Affairs
Zach J. Stoebe
Telephone: (602) 514-7413

Updated May 23, 2024

Press Release Number: 2024-067_Tifft