An Arizona man was charged by federal agents on Saturday (June 9) for allegedly making online threats to kill Black Harvard University students last year. The man also reportedly mentioned bombing the university to “end a pro-Black agenda” after it announced its first Black student graduation.
The racist comments were purportedly left by Nicholas Zuckerman, 24, on Harvard’s Instagram page on May 13 of last year, Massachusetts’ U.S. Attorney’s Office said. “If the blacks only ceremony happens, then I encourage violence and death at it,” Zuckerman is believed to have written on Instagram, MassLive reported. “I’m thinking two automatics with extendo clips. Just so no [expletive] gets away.”
Zuckerman is believed to have also made references to setting off explosives and encouraging others to do so on Harvard’s campus. He wrote, “#Bombharvard” on multiple posts, Andrew Lelling, U.S. Attorney for Massachusetts, said.
Authorities were alerted to the threatening comments by someone who read them online.
“A concerned citizen who saw the posts reported them to the Harvard University Police, who ultimately referred the case to federal authorities,” Lelling’s office said in a statement, according to MassLive.
The man’s comments came around the time that right-wing blog Daily Wire made a false report which suggested that Harvard would “segregate graduation ceremonies based on race.” The Black Commencement Ceremony — a student-run event approved by Harvard last year — was open to all students to attend and did not replace the main commencement ceremony.
Zuckerman will be charged with two counts of transmitting in interstate and foreign commerce a threat to injure the person of another, the statement said. He is facing up to five years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of $250,000.