A 19-year-old man was charged with a serious crime on Wednesday Calling a false alarm at the Ford Motor Company plant in Northland, Kansas City So someone in the know can take a night off from work.
Clay County Prosecutor Zachary Thompson The FBI and Claycomo police arrested Freedom resident Zacharias Peterson at his home Wednesday morning and charged him with terroristic threats.
Peterson is accused of calling Ford’s security and risk management team around 5:20 a.m. Tuesday. During the phone call, Peterson threatened to “start shooting” if the plant was not cleared of its nearly 2,200 workers, court documents show.
He said he had an AK-47 strapped to his chest with three spare magazines, a pistol and a pound of C4 plastic explosives.
During a police interview, Peterson said he downloaded a cellphone app to help hide his phone number. He admitted to making the call and said he knew what C4’s plastic explosives were based on playing the Call of Duty video game.
The phone call prompted Ford to shut down production and clean up workers for the night while special operations officers responded to assess the threat. of Auto assembly plant in ClaycomoThe facility, which manufactures F-150 pickup trucks and Transit vans, employs about 7,250 people and sits on about 1,300 acres.
About 100 members of state and federal law enforcement responded to the situation. Earlier, the Clay County Sheriff’s Office suspected the threat was a hoax but spent six hours searching the massive facility, still taking it seriously.
“This fraud has put a huge strain on law enforcement — not to mention the financial loss Ford has had to shut down production.” Clay County Sheriff Will Akin said at a press conference earlier Wednesday..
On Wednesday, Thomson praised law enforcement for “bravely” going into space in the face of threats. He also condemned false reporting, which ties up law enforcement resources and often takes a “grave sensitivity” to public fear of violence.
“When someone makes a call like this, it takes law enforcement officers away from their job of keeping our community safe,” Thompson said, adding, “In Clay County, we take this type of crime very seriously.”
Under Missouri law, the crime is a Class D felony that carries a maximum sentence of seven years in prison and a $10,000 fine.