Kentucky Man Charged with Communications of Interstate Threats

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FILE PHOTO: Signage is seen at the United States Department of Justice headquarters in Washington, D.C.

NEW ORLEANS – U.S. Attorney Duane A. Evans announced that BRIAN ADAMS, age 22, of Paintsville, Kentucky, was indicted on June 30, 2022 by a federal grand jury for communication of interstate threats to kidnap or injure, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 875(c). 

According to the indictment, ADAMS, transmitted a threat to a fifth-grade class at the Laureate Academy Charter School on or about October 14, 2020.  At the time, the school was conducting class virtually over Zoom due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  Specifically, ADAMS is alleged to have used racial epithets and threats against the students.  The grand jury also made a special finding that ADAMS selected the fifth-grade class as the object of his threat because of the actual and perceived race of the students and teachers. 

If convicted of this offense, ADAMS faces a maximum sentence of 5 years, a fine of up to $250,000, up to 1 year of supervised release, and a $100 mandatory special assessment fee. 

U.S. Attorney Evans reiterated that the indictment is merely an allegation and that the guilt of the defendant must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.

This case is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Assistant United States Attorneys Tracey N. Knight and Jonathan L. Shih are in charge of the prosecution.