A Los Lunas man was arrested in Albuquerque for threatening to blow up a building in Kentucky, and harm a Rio Rancho police officer.
Lawrence Kenneth Garcia, 49, was arrested on Tuesday, Nov. 5, on a federal complaint charging him with making threats using interstate communications.
Garcia is the same man charged with larceny, disorderly conduct, public nuisance and evading an officer in late August after allegedly stealing several flags in the city of Belen. When questioned by police, Garcia said he took the flags “because the United States under Donald Trump is under duress.”
According to the FBI criminal complaint, Garcia called a USAA customer service agent in Hopkinsville, Ky. on Monday, Nov. 4, telling the woman he was “declaring war, civil action against the United States of American for treason, for death…”
He went on to tell her if President Donald Trump didn’t step down by Garcia’s birthday on Jan. 12, he would “declare war against the devil,” and saying “…Trump you are going to bow, to the American people…”
Garcia allegedly said he would send a suspicious package to USAA that would blow up the building, advising the agent to evacuate the building.
The criminal complaint states Garcia said he was going to bomb a building that day, asking the woman which building she wanted him to blow up in Albuquerque.
“And I shall do it. Name it. Or which cop do you want me to kill?” Garcia said, according to the partial transcript of the conversation included in the complaint.
USAA Security staff reported the call and threats to police in San Antonio, Texas, where the company is headquartered, and provided the department with a transcript of the call. The San Antonio Police Department contacted New Mexico State Police once officers established Garcia was in New Mexico, and NMSP brought in the FBI.
Garcia was arrested by Albuquerque Police Department officers on Tuesday for related charges in connection with an assault on a New Mexico Gaming and Control Board Officer. He was interviewed at Presbyterian Kaseman Hospital in Albuquerque.
He told officers he called USAA because he “wanted his card,” and became frustrated when the agent wanted him to answer security questions instead of letting him provide a password.
During the interview, Garcia admitted to talking to the agent about bombs and bombing the USAA building, but didn’t want to carry through with the threats as they were leverage to get his card.
In his conversation with the USAA representative, Garcia said he declared civil action “if a PD or local police climb up a tree I’m going to put them in the hospital.” While being interviewed, he told APD officers he didn’t want to kill all police officers, but did want to inflict bodily harm on an officer by the name of McCracken who had recently transferred to the Rio Rancho Police Department.
“…specifically that he wanted to ‘bring him to his knees’ and put McCracken in the hospital,” the complaint said.
Officers verified someone named Dylan McCracken is an officer with RRPD.
Kaseman security officers told APD officers Garcia had been in and out of the hospital since Wednesday, Oct. 30, and hospitals employees told them Garcia likely had schizophrenia.
Julia M. Dendinger began working at the VCNB in 2006. She covers Valencia County government, Belen Consolidated Schools and the village of Bosque Farms. She is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists Rio Grande chapter’s board of directors.