Woman Pleads Guilty to Hoax Bomb Threat Against Claremore Schools
TULSA, Okla. — United States Attorney Trent Shores announced that Stephanie Louise Montgomery pleaded guilty Thursday to providing False Information about Bombs in Schools, a crime that carries a maximum penalty of five years imprisonment and a $250,000 fine.
As part of the plea agreement, Montgomery will pay restitution totaling approximately $12,000 to law enforcement agencies and first responders, including the Claremore Police and Fire Departments, the Tulsa Police Department, and the Oklahoma Highway Patrol, for costs incurred when responding to and investigating the false threat.
On March 27, 2018, Montgomery made a threatening phone call to Claremore High School, indicating there were five bombs in backpacks at the high school and ten more bombs located at elementary schools. Students and staff from all Claremore schools were evacuated or sheltered in place until being transported to alternate safe locations. Law enforcement performed sweeps of the seven area schools but found no explosive devices. The threat followed shortly after the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School mass shooting in Parkland, Florida.
“Our schools should be safe havens for students and teachers, not places where they feel threatened. People like Montgomery exploit school shooting tragedies and the resulting fear in communities. Their threats create undo anxiety in our children and worry among parents. Hoax threats cause the use of significant law enforcement resources. We take every school threat with the utmost seriousness and will respond accordingly,” said U.S. Attorney Trent Shores.
Montgomery’s sentencing hearing is scheduled for December 11, 2018, at 10:30 a.m. Chief Judge Gregory K. Frizzell presided over the case in U.S. District Court, and Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert T. Raley prosecuted the case. AUSA Raley is the National Security Anti-Terrorism (ATAC) Prosecutor for the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Northern District of Oklahoma.
Investigative agencies handling in the incident include the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Rogers County Sheriff’s Department, the Rogers County District Attorney’s Office, the Oklahoma Highway Patrol Bomb Squad, the Claremore Police Department, and the Tulsa Police Department.