Williamstown man gets probation for hospital bomb threat

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NORTH ADAMS -- A Williamstown man who phoned in a fake bomb threat to North Adams Regional Hospital earlier this year has been sentenced to six months' probation.

James Lafleur, 56, of Langlois Avenue, admitted to sufficient facts for a plea of guilty of threatening to commit a crime when he called in a bomb threat to hospital staff on January 20.

He was sentenced in Northern Berkshire District Court on Wednesday to six months' probation and ordered to continue treatment at the Brien Center, which provides mental health and substance abuse services. The charge was initially a felony bomb threat, but was knocked down to a misdemeanor.

The threat caused the hospital to go into lockdown for several hours while police conducted a search for any evidence of an explosive device. Incoming patients were diverted to Vermont and Pittsfield.

Hospital information technology personnel were able to trace the phone number that made the call, resulting in Lafleur's arrest.

In his criminal complaint, North Adams Det. John Leclair stated Lafleur "was extremely stressed due to being forced out of his home. Lafleur stated that other stress factors, such as a surgery he believes he needs to have, and the hospital not being able to schedule him an appointment to talk to someone until tomorrow, led to him making the fake threat via a telephone."


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