A State Police cruiser sits in front of Cornell University’s Center for Jewish Living. | David Bauder/APITHACA, N.Y. — A Cornell University student was arrested Tuesday and accused of posting threatening statements online about Jewish students at the school, law enforcement officials said.
Patrick Dai, 21, a junior from Pittsford, New York, is charged in a federal criminal complaint with posting threats to kill or injure another using interstate communications, according to a joint announcement from the U.S. Attorney’s office, FBI, New York State police and Cornell University Police.
It was not immediately clear if Dai had hired an attorney. The federal courts website had not yet been updated with the case. Dai did not respond to a Facebook message and his Cornell email address could not be immediately accessed., posted over the weekend on a forum about fraternities and sororities, alarmed students at the Ivy League school in upstate New York. headtopics.com
Dai is scheduled to appear Wednesday in federal court in Syracuse, New York, before a United States Magistrate Judge. Joel M. Malina, vice president for university relations at Cornell University, said the school was grateful for the quick work of the FBI.
“We remain shocked by and condemn these horrific, antisemitic threats and believe they should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law,” Malina said in a statement. “We know that our campus community will continue to support one another in the days ahead.” headtopics.com
The comments this weekend were left on a Greek life website that is not affiliated with the school in Ithaca, New York, about 227 miles northwest of New York City. Dai’s threatening messages included posts calling for the deaths of Jewish people and a post that threatened to “shoot up 104 west,” a Cornell University dining hall that caters predominantly to kosher diets and is located next to the Cornell Jewish Center, according to the complaint.