Arrest Made in Racist Threats Directed at Howard University

ALEXANDRIA, Va. — A northern Virginia man has been charged with making racist threats directed at Howard University in 2015.

Twenty-six-year-old John Edgar Rust of Alexandria was arrested Wednesday and charged in federal court in Alexandria with transmitting threats over the internet.

According to an FBI affidavit, Rust posted his threat to a chat board in November 2015. He concluded by saying “After all, it’s not murder if they’re black.”

The affidavit states investigators traced the threat to a Panera restaurant in Alexandria. Agents then determined Rust’s computer was connected to the restaurant’s Wi-Fi network, and that he made a restaurant purchase that day on his credit card.

Rust is in custody and scheduled to make an initial appearance Thursday. Court records do not list an attorney.

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