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Disgraced journalist Juan Thompson suspected in 8 ‘copycat’ bomb threats against Jewish centers

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A suspect arrested in a series of bomb threats against Jewish community centers has been identified as a former reporter who fabricated quotes and invented sources for numerous stories.

The FBI arrested 31-year-old Juan Thompson, of St. Louis, in connection with at least eight threats against Jewish community centers, including some in the New York City area, as part of what federal prosecutors called a “campaign to harass and intimidate” a woman after a breakup.

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Nearly 100 JCCs and schools have received bomb threats in five separate waves, most recently Monday — when 21 bomb threats were called in to 13 JCCs and eight Jewish schools in Alabama, Delaware, Florida, Indiana, Maryland, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Virginia.

Investigators consider Thompson a “copycat” and said his arrest was not connected to the wider series of threats made in recent months.

He allegedly made some of the threats in his own name and others in the victim’s name, and investigators also said Thompson sent hoax faxes to the woman’s employer last year detailing claims about her alleged anti-Semitic statements on social media.

Thompson complained last week on his Twitter feed that he was being investigated by the Secret Service and FBI for the bomb threats, which he blamed on a former romantic partner who he claimed was trying to frame him.

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Thompson was revealed as a serial fabulist in February 2016 after The Intercept added editor’s notes to five of his prior stories, including a retraction of an article that included bogus quotes attributed to a cousin of white supremacist Dylann Roof.

That article quoted the nonexistent cousin, “Scott Roof,” who speculated the white supremacist had killed nine black churchgoers in South Carolina because a woman had rejected him for a black man.

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Those claims were cited in other media reports afterward.

Thompson worked as a Raw Story editor for two weeks prior to the revelations about his previous work at The Intercept.

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President Donald Trump suggested Wednesday that the wave of threats might have been false flag-style operations “to make others look bad,” although he didn’t specify what he meant.

A White House adviser, Anthony Scaramucci, made a similar claim that same day.


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2020 Election

GOP scrambling to pay for Jacksonville convention after Trump yanked it from North Carolina: report

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According to a report from the New York Times, Republican officials are having difficulties getting donors to pay for the Republican National Convention to be held in Jacksonville, Florida after Donald Trump yanked the gathering out of Charlotte, North Carolina in a fit of pique over COVID-19 health restrictions.

At issue, the report notes, is that millions of dollars were spent in North Carolina where a smaller event will now be held, and now the party is, in essence, forced to pay for a second convention.

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2020 Election

Ivanka Trump buried for her COVID-19 advice during the packed Mt Rushmore rally: ‘What a clown’

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First daughter Ivanka Trump was thoroughly raked over the coals late Friday night after she posted advice on Twitter about wearing masks at the same time that her father, Donald Trump, was holding a rally at Mt. Rushmore before a crowd of shoulder-to-shoulder fans, few of whom were wearing masks.

Making things worse, within minutes of Ivanka's tweet it was announced that Kimberly Guilfoyle, a Trump campaign official and girlfriend of Don Trump Jr., tested positive for the coronavirus.

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2020 Election

Donald Trump is the 21st-century Jefferson Davis– and history will judge him

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On Friday, Donald Trump and his wife Melania attended an early Independence Day celebration held at Mount Rushmore.

This article first appeared on Salon.

There were fireworks, a military flyover, and "patriotic" songs such as "The Star-Spangled Banner".

The entire spectacle embodied the worst kind of superficial juvenile patriotism.

More than 130,000 Americans are dead from the coronavirus pandemic. The country teeters on the edge of a second Great Depression. A neofascist regime rules in Washington. Donald Trump is in thrall to Vladimir Putin and Russia and in doing so actively betrays the United States and the American people.

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