Caller ID Locates California Bomb Threat Source

Oakland Int'l Airport's caller ID system helps foil a series of threats to airport, courthouse


The Oakland International Airport caller ID system helped foil a series of phoned bomb threats last week that emptied the courthouse in Martinez and set off alerts at local FBI offices, police and the FBI said Tuesday.

Police suspect a Concord man made the threats Friday in calls to Martinez police dispatchers, to FBI offices in Concord and Oakland, and the airport.

The first call came in to Martinez police just before 1 p.m., police said.

A man told a dispatcher there was a bomb in the courthouse and implored the operator not to take the information lightly. Several Superior Court buildings were emptied for about two hours, but no explosives were found.

Later in the afternoon, the FBI resident agent in Concord got a call.

"We had the number but it came back to a pay phone," Special Agent LaRae Quy said.

About 2:45 p.m., airport operators received a similar threat via the airport's 24-hour hotline, airport spokesperson Rosemary Barnes said.

"We followed our process for the bomb threat checklist," Barnes said.

Airport officials, including a resident FBI agent, were notified. They were able to turn the number into an address, Quy said.

They called the Concord FBI office and asked them to roll by the address.

"They did, and there was a guy at the pay phone," Quy said.

The man got on a bike and started to pedal away, but agents stopped him and asked to speak with him.

"He said, 'yes, yes, I have lots of things to tell the FBI,'" Quy said.

FBI agents detained Kevin Rousch, 34. The FBI called Martinez police, who arrested Rousch on an outstanding petty-theft warrant, police said.

Rousch appeared in court Tuesday, when the warrant charge was dropped. He is now being held on suspicion of four counts of making false bomb threats, possession of drugs and drug paraphernalia, and being under the influence, jail officials said.

He is in County Jail in lieu of $90,000 bond. Rousch declined an interview request from the Times.

Martinez police Sgt. Gary Peterson said the case would be turned over to the FBI, but Quy said no decision has been made on federal charges.

"There is no need to duplicate the charges," she said.