Bomb scare suspect arrested after year and a half

Saturday, October 6, 2007 | 6:08 p.m. CDT; updated 7:01 p.m. CDT, Saturday, July 19, 2008

COLUMBIA — A St. Louis man was arrested Saturday on suspicion of calling in two fake bomb threats to the MU campus more than a year and a half ago.

Nathan Allen Simms, 38, was arrested Friday in St. Louis on three counts of making a false bomb report, said Maj. Tom Reddin of the Boone County Sheriff’s Department.

MU police said the suspect called in bomb threats to Gannett and Stanley halls on the MU campus on Jan. 27, 2006, said MU police Capt. Brian Weimer. Officers evacuated Gannett, Gwynn, Neff and Stanley halls and conducted a sweep of the buildings with police dogs but found no device in any of the buildings.

An investigation conducted afterwards resulted in a warrant for Simms’ arrest, Weimer said. He declined to say if there was a motive for the bomb threats.

MU officials credited MU Journalism School staff for writing down information from the caller, which led police to a suspect in February.

The bomb scare prompted Journalism School officials to reevaluate school safety and evacuation procedures after Associate Dean Brian Brooks called the school’s emergency response haphazard.

As of Saturday, Simms was being held at Boone County Jail on $30,000 bond.

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