Estimated read time: 2-3 minutes
This archived news story is available only for your personal, non-commercial use. Information in the story may be outdated or superseded by additional information. Reading or replaying the story in its archived form does not constitute a republication of the story.
PROVO — A Denver man visiting Utah was arrested early Saturday after police say he threatened on social media to be "the next mass shooter" and said he was planning on "killing as many girls as I see."
Christopher Cleary, 27, was booked into Utah County Jail for investigation of threats of terrorism and for allegedly violating parole in Colorado, according to court documents.
The arrest came following an expedited joint effort by law enforcement and FBI agents in Colorado and Utah, a jail affidavit states.
According to the affidavit, Provo police were contacted early Saturday by law enforcement in Colorado about threatening posts on Cleary's Facebook page.
"All I wanted was a girlfriend. … All I wanted was to be loved, yet no one cares about me I'm 27 years old and I've never had a girlfriend before and I'm still a virgin, this is why I'm planning on shooting up a public place soon and being the next mass shooter cause I'm ready to die and all the girls the turned me down is going to make it right by killing as many girls as I see," one of the posts read, according to the affidavit.
Another warned, "Theres nothing more dangerous than man ready to die," the affidavit states.
The timing of the posts was especially troubling, police noted in the affidavit, saying "An additional concern had to do with several Women's Marches taking place in various locations throughout the state today, including a march in Provo, and another in Salt Lake City."
The posts were tied to an IP address in Provo, but police didn't locate Cleary there. Together, FBI agents in both Colorado and Utah tracked Cleary's phone to a McDonalds at 1225 S. University Ave.
After Clearly was taken into custody at the McDonalds by an FBI agent and Utah County Major Crime Task Force detective, the affidavit states, he allegedly told police in an interview he had posted the messages "but claimed to be upset and not thinking clearly when he did so," and explained he later deleted them because of threats he said he received in response.
Cleary told police he had arrived in Provo the previous day and was staying in an Air BNB rental on the east side of the city. The affidavit indicated he also made suicidal comments and claimed to have a problem with impulse control.
A probation officer in Colorado told Provo police that "this is a pattern of behavior with Cleary where he is on probation for felony stalking and threatening of women," the affidavit states.
Law enforcement in Colorado indicated they will seek extradition for Cleary. He is being held without bail.