A New York man has been arrested for threatening to kill the mayor of Yonkers and city police officers at the St. Patrick’s Day parade, prosecutors said.
Ridon Kola, 32, is accused of posting threatening messages on social media saying he would “slaughter” and “crucify” members of the Yonkers Police Department on McLean Avenue, which runs along the city’s parade route.
He was taken into custody on Friday, the day before the parade, on charges of threatening interstate communications, according to the US Attorney for the Southern District of New York.
According to a criminal complaint, Kola allegedly began posting the messages in 2021. The complaint states that in a post dated November 19, 2021, he allegedly wrote a threat in Albanian, which translated as: “I’m going to slaughter your little girls.”
The following month, he reportedly wrote that he was going to kill the officers and Mayor Mike Spano.
Investigators spoke to Kola in December 2021 at his home. The complaint states that he admitted to writing the messages but said they were not serious and had no plans to harm the officers or the mayor. Police searched his house but found no weapons.
Due to the threats, the police department issued a warning to officers to “exercise diligence and care” when interacting with Kola.
Earlier this month, Kola allegedly began sending threatening messages again, writing on March 6 that he was looking for an officer and would “burn the world up,” according to the complaint.
The complaint states that in a March 9 message, Kola allegedly threatened to “crucify” the police and their bosses “along McLean Avenue”. “It would be a scary sight,” he reportedly said.
Prosecutors said Kola lives close to the area where the parade ends and had also posted a picture of himself holding an axe.
US Attorney Damian Williams said that Cola’s actions would not be tolerated.
“Threatening violence against police or the undermining of public safety will not be tolerated, as Cola is now charged with and for his threats against our dedicated law enforcement partners who work to keep us safe,” he said in a statement. facing jail time.”
If convicted, Kola could face a maximum sentence of five years in prison.