Skip to main content
Press Release

Tampa Area Resident Pleads Guilty and is Sentenced to Prison for Threatening a Sandy Hook Parent

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


A Tampa resident pled guilty today before United States District Judge James I. Cohn and was sentenced to prison for threatening a Sandy Hook parent residing in the Southern District of Florida.

Benjamin G. Greenberg, Acting United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, and George L. Piro, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Miami Field Office, made the announcement.

Lucy Richards, 57, of Tampa, pled guilty in the Southern District of Florida (Case No. 16-CR-80206) to one count of transmitting threats in interstate commerce, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 875(c). Judge Cohn sentenced Richards to 5 months’ imprisonment, to be followed by 5 months’ home confinement. In addition, Richards will be placed on 3 years of supervised release.

On December 14, 2012, the Sandy Hook School shooting occurred in Newtown, Connecticut, and resulted in the death of 20 children and 6 adults. According to the court record in this case, on or about January 10, 2016, Richards made a series of death threats to a parent of a child killed in the Sandy Hook School shooting. The parent resides in South Florida. Richards’ belief that the school shooting was a hoax and never happened motivated her to make the threats.

Mr. Greenberg commended the outstanding investigative efforts of the FBI. This case was prosecuted in the Southern District of Florida by Assistant United States Attorney Karen E. Gilbert.

Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at or on

Updated June 8, 2017