Man Pleads Guilty To Making Bomb Threats At Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport And MOA
MINNEAPOLIS—Earlier today in federal court in St. Paul, a 22-year-old man, formerly of Maine, pleaded guilty to making bomb threats at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport and the Mall of America (“MOA”). Dana William Ashey pleaded guilty to one count of false information and hoaxes. Ashey, who was indicted on May 13, 2013, entered his plea before United States District Court Judge Susan Richard Nelson.
In his plea agreement, Ashey admitted that on April 12, 2013, he threatened that bombs had been planted at both the airport and the MOA. According to a law enforcement affidavit filed in the case, the airport’s police dispatch received a bomb threat at 2:37 a.m., on April 12, 2013, with a warning that a bomb placed in a restroom could go off by 3:00 a.m. At 2:42 a.m. that same day, another bomb threat was phoned in to security dispatch for the MOA. The caller in that instance stated that the bomb had been placed in a restroom. A search of the mall yielded no bomb. At 2:17 p.m., the mall’s switchboard operator received yet another bomb threat. Authorities traced the call and found the man still inside the MOA. The man, later identified as Ashey, possessed the cell phone that was used to deliver the bomb threats.
For his crime, Ashey faces a potential maximum penalty of five years in federal prison. Judge Nelson will determine his sentence at a future hearing, yet to be scheduled. This case is the result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Joint Terrorism Task Force, the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport Police Department, the Bloomington Police Department, and the MOA Security. It is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Andrew R. Winter.