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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of New York

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, August 4, 2022

Buffalo Man Accused Of Using Twitter To Threaten To Kill Blacks At Buffalo Grocery Stores

CONTACT: Barbara Burns   
PHONE:       (716) 843-5817 
FAX #:          (716) 551-3051  

BUFFALO, N.Y.-U.S. Attorney Trini E. Ross announced today that Rolik Walker, 24, of Buffalo, NY, was arrested and charged by criminal complaint with making an interstate threat. The charge carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Timothy C. Lynch, who is handling the case, stated that according to the criminal complaint, on May 16, 2022, just two days after the racially motivated shooting at the Tops grocery store on Jefferson Avenue in Buffalo, Walker created a Twitter account with the handle @ConklinHero. The defendant accused in the Tops shooting is from Conklin, NY. Walker then used the @ConklinHero account to post that he and his “associates” were targeting several grocery stores in the Buffalo area and were “only looking to kill blacks.” Walker attempted to anonymize his creation of the Twitter account and the Twitter post by utilizing an application on his cell phone that masked his IP address.

Walker made an initial appearance this afternoon before U.S. Magistrate Judge Michael J. Roemer and was released on conditions.

The criminal complaint is the result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, under the direction of Special Agent-in-Charge Stephen Belongia.
  
The fact that a defendant has been charged with a crime is merely an accusation and the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.  

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Updated August 4, 2022