ROYAL OAK (WWJ) The Royal Oak Police Department has identified and arrested the person believed to be responsible for the bomb threat at Yogurt City in Royal Oak.
And the investigation ended with a surprise twist: arrested was Benjamin Tesner, 22,a friend of an employee.
“Investigators are unsure what motivated Tesner to make the threat,” police said in a press release.
Tesner was charged Friday with one felony count of false report or threat of terrorism, which carries a penalty of up 20 years in prison and a $20,000 fine.
He was arraigned before Judge Wittenberg in 44th District Court. His bond was set at $50,000/10 percent.
He’s implicated in an incident that unfolded at 2:50 p.m. Sept. 20, 2016, when an employee of Yogurt City, at 122 S. Main Street, received two threatening phone calls seconds apart.
The male caller told the employee he was with ISIS, there was a bomb in the building, and implied it would detonate within four hours.
Officers quickly responded and evacuated businesses in the immediate area. Officers checked the business and surrounding areas with the assistance of a bomb dog from the Macomb County Sheriff’s Office. No explosive devices were located.
Investigators searched the suspect’s home in Oak Park, as well as an apartment in Royal Oak from where the call was placed, with the assistance of a bomb dog from the Oakland County Sheriff’s Office. No explosives or any evidence linking the suspect to ISIS or any other terrorist organization were found.
“As the charges indicate, this is a very serious crime. I am very pleased our investigators were able to quickly identify and arrest this individual bringing this matter to a quick close.” Chief Corey O’Donohue
Tesner has prior convictions for disturbing the peace, minor in possession of alcohol, and a misdemeanor weapons offense.
His next court date is set for Tuesday, Oct. 4.