NEW YORK — A former journalist from St. Louis who terrorized his ex-girlfriend and made bomb threats in her name to Jewish groups must be resentenced.
The 2nd US Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan cited a legal flaw Wednesday in ordering Juan Thompson’s resentencing.
It’s unclear what effect, if any, the resentencing will have on his prison term. He is serving a five-year sentence.
Thompson said he sent emails and faxes to his ex-girlfriend’s employer after she ended their relationship last summer and later made bomb threats, claiming his ex-girlfriend had planted bombs.
Prosecutors said Thompson sometimes used his girlfriend’s name while making threats against Jewish community centers, schools or other facilities. One message claimed he had placed two bombs in a Jewish school and was “eager for Jewish Newtown,” a reference to the 2012 school massacre in Connecticut, prosecutors said.
He said he committed the crimes “to disrupt my ex-romantic partner’s life and cause her great distress.”
Thompson was sentenced in December 2017 after pleading guilty to cyberstalking and making fake bomb threats to a dozen Jewish community centers, schools or other facilities nationwide.
Thompson was fired from the online publication The Intercept in 2016 after being accused of fabricating story details.
His hoaxes in early 2017 came as about 150 threats were being made against Jewish facilities. Most were blamed on an Israeli-American hacker, M., whose full name is withheld by a gag order in Israel.
M. was convicted of making thousands of bombs threats to Jewish community centers in the United States and other targets around the world.
M. has been held in custody since his arrest in March 2017 and in November 2018 was sentenced to 10 years in prison.