Man sends death threats to President Obama from Skidmore computer (Updated): Threats include vendettas against the President's life as well as the lives of school children

Posted by Julia Leef

Brent G. Dickinson, 33, used a public computer at around 1:56 a.m. on Feb. 17 in the Saisselin Art Building to threaten President Barrack Obama with murder via the White House website message board, according to Times Union.

"Secret Service officers showed up on campus requesting information on a computer IP address," Director of Campus Safety Dennis Conway said. "They didn't give us any explanation as to why they wanted this information."

The College only has a small number of computers available to the public, out of consideration for prospective students and visiting families, and it was one of these computers Dickinson used. The Secret Service agents worked with staff from the Information Technology department to locate the specific computer.

Dickinson also used a computer at 10:10 a.m. on Friday, March 2 in the Saratoga Springs Public Library to send a message on the board saying he would take school children hostage and kill them, according to Saratoga County District Attorney James A. Murphy III. Conway said this is where Dickinson was located and apprehended, adding that he was easy to identify since he made no effort to conceal his name on the board.

According to Conway, this is not the first time that Campus Safety has worked with federal agents, who ask for background information regarding former students or employees looking for employment in the government.

"We do work with them in other situations, too, so it's not that uncommon to have them on campus," Conway said.

According to Times Union, Dickinson lived in room nine of the Gateway Motel on Maple Avenue, a little more than two miles from the College campus. U.S. Secret Service agents intercepted his messages and contacted the local police, who arrested him on Friday night. He has been charged with two counts of making terrorist threats against the president and school children and is being held in Saratoga County jail with a $50,000 bail set by City Court Judge James Doern.

Dickinson, who Conway said does not have any connections to anyone on campus, has been banned from the College grounds for life.

"We have an open campus, but what we do in cases like this is write him an official letter banning him from campus. If he ever shows up here he will be arrested," Conway said. 

The public defender will represent Dickinson, who is due back in City Court on Tuesday, March 6. A county grand jury will hear his case on March 21.

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