5 years for ex-Chicago journalist for bomb threats to Jewish groups

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Juan Thompson, a former journalist who admitted cyber-stalking an ex-girlfriend and terrorizing Jewish groups with bomb threats, has been sentenced in New York to five years in prison. | Warren County Sheriff’s Department via AP

NEW YORK — A former Chicago journalist who admitted cyber -talking an ex-girlfriend and terrorizing Jewish groups with bomb threats has been sentenced in New York to five years in prison.

Juan Thompson, who’d been charged in early March in connection with at least eight threats against Jewish institutions in the United States and a bomb threat to New York’s Anti-Defamation League. was sentenced Wednesday in Manhattan federal court.

Calling Thompson’s crimes domestic terrorism, Judge P. Kevin Castel sentenced the St. Louis man to a year longer than the federal sentencing guidelines recommended. He cited the eloquence of a victim statement delivered by Thompson’s ex-girlfriend, Francesca Rossi.

Rossi said Thompson began abusing her during their relationship and intensified the terror delivered largely through social media and electronic communications after they broke up.

Thompson pleaded guilty in June to cyber-stalking and making fake bomb threats to a dozen Jewish community centers and day schools.

Thompson was an intern for WBEZ-FM for four months in 2014, though the Chicago public radio station previously described his duties as “minimal.” He also was an intern for DNAinfo Chicago.


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