TJ Miller arrested for alleged bomb threat, faces up to five years in prison
Comedian and actor TJ Miller (Silicon Valley, Deadpool) was arrested on Monday (4/9) at New York’s La Guardia Airport and has been charged by federal criminal complaint with “intentionally conveying to law enforcement false information about an explosive device on a train traveling to Connecticut.” Miller appeared today before U.S. District Judge Jeffrey A. Meyer in New Haven and was released on a $100,000 bond. The charge carries a maximum term of imprisonment of five years. Here’s what happened via the United States Attorney’s Office press release:
On the evening of March 18, 2018, MILLER called a 911 dispatcher in New Jersey and reported that he was on Amtrak Train 2256 traveling from Washington, D.C., toward Penn Station in New York City, and that a female passenger “has a bomb in her bag.” MILLER described the woman as having brown hair and a scarf. By the time Amtrak investigators received notice of the call and were mobilized to stop and search the train, the train was in Connecticut. Amtrak officials stopped Train 2256 at Green’s Farms Station in Westport, where passengers were directed to detrain, and bomb squad members boarded and searched the train. No evidence of any explosive device or materials was detected.
The complaint alleges that an investigator contacted MILLER, who was in New York, by phone. On the call, MILLER said the woman, who he described this time as having red hair and a red scarf, was carrying a “black bag carry on suitcase with a handle.” He said she kept checking her bag without taking anything out; kept asking the First Class attendant what the next stop was, and seemed to want to get off the train and leave her bag behind. The officer detected slurring in MILLER’s voice and asked if he had consumed alcohol that day. MILLER replied that he had consumed “one glass of red wine.” Asked if he suffered from mental illness, MILLER replied “no, absolutely not. This is the first time I’ve ever made a call like this before. I am worried for everyone on that train. Someone has to check that lady out.”
The complaint further alleges that investigators determined that MILLER had actually been traveling on Amtrak Train 2258, not 2256. When Amtrak Train 2258 arrived into Green’s Farms Station shortly thereafter, it was stopped, inspected, and eventually found not to contain any explosive devices or materials. During the stop, Amtrak officers interviewed an attendant from the First Class car where MILLER had been sitting. The attendant stated that MILLER appeared intoxicated upon boarding in Washington, that he consumed multiple drinks on the train, and that he had been removed in New York owing to his intoxication. The attendant also advised that MILLER had been involved in hostile exchanges with a woman who was sitting in a different row from him in the First Class car.
The complaint also alleges that Miller was motivated by a grudge against this woman to call in the alleged bomb threat and that he continued to provide false information to investigators while their public safety response was ongoing.
TJ Miller left hit HBO series Silicon Valley after its fourth season in what producers initially called a “mutual agreement,” though in a Hollywood Reporter cover story in March, producers said the decision was a long time coming and Miller’s use of alcohol and drugs got in the way of everyone being able to do their jobs. In December, Miller was accused of physical and sexual assault against a woman during his time at George Washington University.