Oklahoma City Police Arrest Man For Making Online Threats
OKLAHOMA CITY - Oklahoma City police arrested a teenager accused of threatening to kill police officers.
Police say 19-year-old Tavon Railback made very specific threats on Facebook. Now, he's sitting in the Oklahoma county jail.
Tavon was still active on his Facebook page just an hour before his arrest Tuesday night. He knew police were looking for him, and monitoring his page, even warning his friends posting the “laws reading messages.” Before that, Tavon posted, “They watching… so give they *expletive* a show.”
Oklahoma City Police posted a public announcement on their Facebook page, telling its more than 47,000 followers to take a good look at pictures of the troubled teenager. Within hours of that post, Railback is taken into custody at Will Rogers Court apartments on the southwest side of the city.
“The threat was very clear. He said that he wanted to kill police officers,” said OCPD Sgt. Gary Knight.
Police won't go into detail on how they came across the social media threat, but OCPD's criminal justice unit was immediately made aware of it and a warrant was issued for Railback's arrest.
His post, which has apparently been taken down, shows the teen holding a semi-automatic pistol. The caption shows a series of graphics, symbols, or "emoji's" that police say translate into, "Bust some shots at a cop, and watch his body fall, Bang Bang."
It was just two days prior to Railback's post, when Ismaaiyl Brinsley made a very similar post saying, "I'm putting wings on pigs today. They take 1 of ours.. Let's take 2 of theirs."
Later that day, Brinsley shot and killed two New York City police officers in their parked patrol car. Investigators say Brinsley's post, like Tavon's, included a picture of weapon.
“He's at least verbalizing or putting out there that he's wanting to kill police officers, and that's enough to make it a very serious thing for us,” said Knight.
Railback has a lengthy criminal past, which includes assault and battery on a police officer and first-degree murder, a charge that was dismissed in 2012. Police say that criminal history, known gang affiliation, as well as social media post about violence, and drug trafficking give the threats against police some weight.
Railback is facing charges for violating the state's anti-terrorism act and the unauthorized use of a computer. His bond is set at $500,000.