Man pleads guilty to bomb threats made to local bases

Navy personnel in the water near Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek-Fort Story Aug. 2, 2017, after four threats had been made to the base. Credit: WAVY/Deanna LeBlanc.

NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — A former U.S. Navy sailor was linked to a series of bomb threats made earlier this year to two local military bases with assistance from both Verizon and T-Mobile.

Thirty-four-year-old Allante Arrington, a Petty Officer 3rd Class who was attached to the USS Oak Hill at the time of threats, pleaded guilty Wednesday to one count of maliciously conveying false information, which carries up to a maximum of 10 years in prison. He’s scheduled to be sentenced on March 1, 2018 in U.S. District Court in Norfolk.

A total of six bomb threats were made on August 2 to Naval Station Norfolk and Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek-Fort Story, where Arrington primarily worked.

Related: Sailor charged in connection with series bomb threats

The first of the threats was called in around 6 a.m. that day. Court records show the caller told the Navy Region Mid-Atlantic Regional Dispatch Center that “three bombs will go off on base at 0930.”

By that afternoon, all of the threats had been cleared and normal operations resumed on the bases.

READ: Plea Agreement | Statement of Facts

According to court documents that came with the plea agreement, Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek-Fort Story uses a service owned by Verizon Wireless to handle its communications. Verizon therefore has access to all incoming call data that comes into the base.

That day, Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS) sent an “Emergency Situation Disclosure” request to Verizon, which led to 15 possible numbers that could have been the source of the calls.

The investigation revealed the 15 numbers were “masked hub site” numbers associated with T-Mobile Wireless callers. After being served a subpoena for information related to a local number used in the bomb threats, T-Mobile released information that linked the number with Arrington.

On several occasions, Arrington used *67 prior to dialing the numbers, which prevents caller information from being shown on a call receiver’s display.

Arrington was charged in September with six counts of maliciously conveying false information.