Woman indicted in connection with alleged fake bomb threat against Boston Children's

A federal grand jury has indicted a Westfield, Mass., woman in connection with an alleged fake bomb threat made against Boston Children's Hospital, the Justice Department announced Oct. 7.

Catherine Leavy, 37, was previously charged by criminal complaint Sept. 15 with one count of explosive materials — willfully making a false bomb threat. The Justice Department said she has now been indicted on one count of making a false bomb threat and one count of intentionally conveying false or misleading information that a bomb was coming to Boston Children's.

According to charging documents, Ms. Leavy allegedly made the fake bomb threat as federal agents began investigating threats made against the hospital and its employees. Boston Children's had reported a harassment campaign against the hospital based on misinformation about its treatment of the young transgender community. The campaign centers on recent commentary about the hospital's Gender Multispecialty Service Program.

On Aug. 30, police investigated a report of a telephonic bomb threat at the hospital. No explosive device was located, but the hospital was on lockdown as police investigated.

Records obtained by law enforcement indicated the phone number used to make the bomb threat was subscribed in Ms. Leavy's name and that it pinged off a cell tower near her home at the time of the bomb threat, the Justice Department said. Authorities recovered the phone allegedly used to make the threat from Ms. Leavy's residence.

If convicted, Ms. Leavy faces up to 10 years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of up to $250,000 on the charge of making a false bomb threat, the Justice Department said. She faces up to five years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of up to $250,000 on the charge of intentionally conveying false or misleading information.

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