Police: Suspect confesses to LSU bomb threat

William Bouvay (Source: EBRSO)
William Bouvay (Source: EBRSO)
Picture from Facebook
Picture from Facebook

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Police made an arrest late Tuesday night in connection with the LSU bomb threat Monday morning that caused the evacuation of the entire campus.

An LSU Police Department spokesperson said the suspect, William Bouvay Jr., 42, of Baton Rouge, has been charged with communicating false information of a planned bombing on school property. Police say Bouvay is not an LSU student.

Bouvay, referred to as "Boobie" by his friends, is being held in the East Baton Rouge Parish Prison. He was arrested just before midnight.

In the police report from the East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff's Office, what Bouvay said to the 911 operator was recorded.

"Yes, I've planted three bombs at LSU's school campus. My colleagues planted three bombs at LSU to go off in two hours if my (pause). This is not a joke. I'm gonna go there and... (call disconnected)."

According to the report, detectives tracked the cell phone call to Skysail Avenue in Baton Rouge. While police were in the area, they found Bouvay.

Detectives said they questioned Bouvay and he eventually confessed to making the call.  Bouvay also told detectives where they could find the cell phone used to place the threatening call, the report says.

Bouvay faces up to 20 years in prison if convicted of the one charge. Bouvay may also be charged with terrorism, which carries a maximum sentence of 15 years in prison. Other charges may be filed against him as well. His bond has been set at $1 million.

LSU police said Bouvay was accused of harassing a professor in the past. His police record shows arrests for marijuana and a few violations of restraining orders."Thanks to good old fashioned police work as well as technology, an arrest has been made," said LSU Police Chief Lawrence Rabalais.

During the 3 p.m. news conference, Rabalais said the suspect was arrested by LSU police in 2004 on a charge of terrorizing and served 18 months in prison.

"This is technology at its best and good old fashioned police work by LSU police and all of their partners," said Col. Mike Edmonson, superintendent of Louisiana State Police.

Col. Edmonson says he hopes this quick arrest by police will send a strong warning to anyone considering make a prank phone call in the future. "If they do, we're going to find them," Edmonson said.

"I cannot tell you how proud I am of all of our law enforcement units that have worked together so closely and as you heard from our state superintendent, he was absolutely determined that we apprehend the culprit and do that as quickly as possible," said LSU Interim Chancellor William Jenkins. "Who would have guessed it would have been within a day that we apprehended the person who perpetrated what is truly a crime? So, I am so pleased for this to have been accomplished so swiftly, but more importantly, how so many have worked together to get this done. The message here is working together, working collectively, supporting one another brings success and we see that again exemplified today."

"LSU and LSU Police Department would like extend our sincere thanks and appreciation to all Law Enforcement that assisted in the initial response and subsequent investigation. The cooperation, assistance and old fashioned police work was instrumental in a quick resolution to this incident," stated LSU Police Chief Lawrence Rabalais.

In a 3 p.m. news conference, officials say this is not a national security type of issue, but Bouvay's motive has not been released due to it being an ongoing criminal investigation.

The campus was evacuated around 11:30 a.m. Monday after officials received a phone threat. Students that live in residence halls were left waiting for word it was safe to return.

Officials said they were left with no choice but to evacuate. Students said they understood the cautious approach.

When some 35,000 students, faculty and staff were told to evacuate from campus, the buildings were quickly cleared, and no one was injured.

It was traffic that became a major problem.

The threat came in the wake of bomb scares at several other large universities around the nation last week.

Residents living on campus were allowed back into their dorm rooms just after 8 p.m. and the entire campus was given the all clear around 11 p.m.

All 250 buildings on campus had to be checked first.

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