St. Paul Man Becomes Prime Suspect in Fake Bomb Threat to Mayor’s Office

According to a criminal complaint, a 45-year-old St. Paul man acknowledged to making a phony bomb threat against the mayor’s office last month because he was upset about internet access at a public housing complex where he resides.

Joel Edward Fox was charged with criminal threats of violence on Tuesday for allegedly making a bomb threat to Mayor Melvin Carter’s office on April 26.

According to the complaint, Fox was detained on Monday after making a similar bomb threat against the St. Paul Public Housing Agency earlier in the day.

St. Paul police officers and Ramsey County sheriff’s deputies were summoned to Carter’s office at City Hall just before 11 a.m. on April 26 in response to a bomb threat. Staff reported getting a call from an unknown number on the office’s general line, which was sent to police.

According to the complaint, a staff member informed an officer that the caller shouted at him and stated, “I planted a bomb in the building.” There was no explosive device discovered.

Officers were able to trace the number back to Fox, who lives in a St. Paul public housing facility on Iowa Avenue, using dispatch records. Officers arrived and talked with Fox, who “confessed to calling because he was upset about the internet service for residents,” according to the complaint.

On Tuesday, Fox had his preliminary hearing in Ramsey County District Court. On Wednesday, he remained in the Ramsey County prison in lieu of $5,000 bond.

Fox was charged with terroristic threats-explosives/incendiary device in 2007. Fox, who was residing in Ham Lake at the time, was sentenced to 90 days in jail in Anoka County District Court, but the sentence was stayed.

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