Tigard man indicted in federal court over school shooting threats
A Tigard man has been charged with a federal crime for allegedly threatening to carry out a school shooting in Sherwood, the U.S. Attorney's Office announced Friday, June 17.
Braeden Richard Riess, 26, was indicted by a federal grand jury with transmitting a threat in interstate commerce. He was previously arraigned in Washington County Circuit Court on six counts of first-degree disorderly conduct.
"However, because Oregon law does not provide sufficient means to address threats of mass violence, this office reached out to the U.S. Attorney's Office to refer the case for federal prosecution," stated the Washington County District Attorney's Office on Friday.
Prosecutors say Riess emailed an unnamed federal agency on May 15, threatening to kill children at Middleton Elementary School in Sherwood and then kill himself.
Riess was arrested on May 16. Authorities say there is not believed to be any active threat. Riess is currently in custody.
Riess made his initial appearance before U.S. Magistrate Judge Youlee Kim You in Portland on Friday for arraignment. He pleaded not guilty.
A three-day jury trial is tentatively set to begin Aug. 16.
If he's convicted in federal court, Riess faces up to five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
Riess' case in Washington County Circuit Court is pending. The six Class A misdemeanor charges he is facing in connection with the alleged threats of violence each carry a maximum sentence of one year in jail and a fine up to $6,250.
That case is scheduled to go to trial July 12.
A spokesperson for the Washington County District Attorney's Office says DA Kevin Barton is "actively working" with members of the Oregon Legislature to change state law to address threats of mass violence in public places, including schools.
State court records show Riess is also being prosecuted in Washington County for felony criminal mischief associated with a separate 2021 incident.
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