A 29-year-old California man was sentenced to 12 months in prison for issuing violent threats to Ohio State University and the players of its football team during a fixture in 2018 between Ohio State and the University of Michigan.
Daniel Lee Rippy, from Livermore, California, received a sentence of 12 months and one day in prison for making an interstate threat. "By threatening to harm Ohio State football players, coaches, and others, Mr. Rippy committed a serious federal crime," stated Chris Hoffman, Special Agent in Charge, FBI Cincinnati.
Threatening Lives With Shooting
The court documents stated that Rippy a message via Facebook, in which he threatened a shooting at The Ohio State University, and pledged to cause.harm to its football players. During the course of a game that was being played at Colombus, Ohio, Rippy issued numerous threats that he would kill or injure players, their families, and the head coach.
"In the middle of Ohio State's annual rival game with the University of Michigan and with more than 100,000 fans in the stadium, law enforcement suddenly had a potential threat of a shooting, said US Attorney David M. DeVillers.
Apprehension and Confession
What initially worried law enforcement was Rippy's prior connection to the state of Michigan. The ease with he could travel to the game or even be present at the game while he issued the treats caused serious concerns among the officials. "Because of Rippy, law enforcement officials at the stadium were placed on high alert and re-allocated resources to investigate the threat," said DeVillers.
However, the authorities finally learnt that Rippy was nowhere near the location of the game while he issued the threats. He was located in California and posed no immediate threat to anyone. He was arrested by FBI agents in California in December 2019, following which he was released on a bond.
Nevertheless, Rippy was taken into custody again and was transported to Columbus by US Marshals after he failed to appear at a scheduled appointment with the court. In July 2020, Rippy pleaded guilty to one count of making a threat in interstate communications.