The Federal Bureau of Investigations notified Nebraska City police March 21 that a suspect has been arrested for making courthouse bomb threats, including a call to Otoe County on Nov. 2.
The FBI says Lonny Bristow, 39, of Mansfield, Ohio, made bomb threats in November and December to courthouses in Nebraska, Washington, Oregon, Tennessee and Mississippi.
The first call in Nebraska went to the Otoe County Courthouse at 11:06 a.m. It was followed by calls to Richardson, Johnson, Seward, Cass, Saline, Gage and Jefferson counties.
The last call went to the Hall of Justice in Lincoln, which was evacuated at 11:36 a.m.
Richardson County Sheriff Randy Houser said a caller to the treasurer's office in Falls City said "the bombs start going off in 17 minutes."
After a search of the building in Nebraska City, Incident Commander Fire Chief AlanViox gave the order to allow employees to re-enter the building at 11:50 a.m.
The FBI reports that prepaid calling cards used to make bomb threat calls in Tennessee were purchased at the Walmart in Sandusky, Ohio. Agents in Cleveland reported that Bristow had purchased a pre-paid calling card on Nov. 27 at the Walmart.
Prosecutors say other calling cards are linked to bomb threats in other states.
"Lonny Bristow induced panic in hundreds of people across several states who were simply trying to do their work," said Stephen D. Anthony, special agent in charge of the Cleveland Division of the FBI.
"The FBI will continue efforts to aggressively pursue charges against anyone, such as Mr. Bristow, who chooses to make reckless and malicious bomb threats," the agent said.
Steven M. Dettelbach, U.S. attorney in Ohio, said a search warrant was executed at Bristow's residence on March 19. Among items seized were computers, bank bank cards, electronic equipment, weapons and ammunition.