Man arrested for threatening to kill African-Americans at Howard University

The FBI arrested a sex offender registered in Virginia they suspect threatened to murder black students at Howard University through online message boards.

John Edgar Rust in 2015 allegedly used the in-store Wi-Fi at an Alexandria Panera to share his vicious messages on the website 4Chan — which allows users to post anonymously, according to the FBI affidavit.

The 26-year-old wrapped his online threats by saying, “After all, it’s not murder if they’re black,” authorities said.

Investigators were able to trace the posts back to the Panera and determined Rust connected his computer to the eatery’s Wi-Fi and made a purchase there the same day, according to court documents

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Members of a white supremacy group give the fascist salute during a gathering in West Allis, Wisconsin, September 3, 2011. Neo-Nazi demonstrators gathered for a "rally in defense of white America" in response to an incident that Milwaukee Police Chief described as racially charged violence outside the Wisconsin state fair on August 4, 2011. REUTERS/Darren Hauck (UNITED STATES - Tags: POLITICS CIVIL UNREST SOCIETY)
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He was arrested and faces a maximum 5-year prison sentence. He was charged with “transmission in interstate commerce of a comunication containing threats to injure the person of another.”

Howard University in a tweet said it was “relieved” by Rust’s arrest. The Maryland school increased security on campus and at nearby Metro stops after the threats were first posted nearly two years ago, according to NBC Washington.

Students also held demonstrations and rallies to condemn the divisive posts, laden with expletives and racial slurs.

This isn’t the first time Rust has been in trouble with the law. He was convicted in November 2012 on two sex charges — idecent liberties with a child and aggravated sexual battery of a minor — and is currently on supervised probation for both crimes, WRTV reported. He is listed among those in the Virginia sex offender registry.

Rust is slated to appear before a federal judge Thursday afternoon.

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