Holly man arrested, charged for making false bomb threats

A man is in custody and is facing charges after allegedly threatening to blow up two houses in...
A man is in custody and is facing charges after allegedly threatening to blow up two houses in the village of Holly.(Village of Holly Police Department)
Published: Aug. 24, 2022 at 2:54 PM EDT
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HOLLY, Mich. (WNEM) - A man is in custody and is facing charges after allegedly threatening to blow up two houses in the village of Holly.

Officers began investigating a series of fake 911 calls in May that reported crimes and other serious emergencies to a specific neighborhood. Investigators said the caller was using a cell phone which made identifying the caller difficult. Multiple calls were made from May through July.

A 911-only cell phone does not have a phone service carrier or provider and is only able to transmit a signal to call 911.

On Aug. 17, police said the same man called to report a bomb threat to a home, threatening to kill the occupants. A day later, another threat was made to a neighboring home to kill a family.

Officers discovered indicators that the home may have been broken into, leading them to evacuate the area. State Police, FBI, and ATF agents at the scene were able to establish there was no bomb inside the home.

Several other bomb threats were made to the home on Aug. 20. An investigator was able to figure out the caller was still on location, and the suspect was in another county when the call was made.

Officers interviewed the homeowner, who was initially a victim of the threats. During questioning, the homeowner admitted to making the threats to falsely implicate the original suspect due to a grievance he has with him, police said.

Robert Edward Nelson Jr., 39, was arrested and lodged at the Oakland County Jail on multiple counts of false report or threat of terrorism.

Nelson was arraigned Wednesday on three counts of false report or threat of terrorism. Each is a 20-year felony. His bond was set at $10,000 with conditions.

Nelson is scheduled to appear back in court for a probable cause conference on Sept. 2 at 8:30 a.m.

“I wish to thank the Holly PD investigating team and our law enforcement partners at the Michigan State Police, FBI, Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) and the Oakland County Sheriff’s Office 911 Center for their assistance,” Holly Police Chief Jerry Nash said. “These threats terrorized a community and expended thousands of dollars in law enforcement resources and diverted hundreds of hours of investigative work.”