Man faces 5 years in prison on empty threat against military recruitment center

The man who sent a threatening message to an FBI tip line, claiming that he was heading to a Carbondale military recruitment center to blow it up, has pleaded guilty to making the threat, according to the U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Illinois.

George Rita II, 42, of Carbondale, was charged in July with intentionally conveying false information about a bomb threat. It is a federal offense.

The initial threat did not specify the recruitment center, according to a news release from Steven Weinhoeft’s office. But investigators tracked the message to Southern Illinois and found the IP address, assigned to Rita’s apartment, which was close to the U.S. Army Recruiting Office in Carbondale.

Rita admitted to the message and confirmed the investigation’s findings during the plea hearing.

He faces up to 5 years in prison on the charge; sentencing is scheduled for Dec. 27.