Des Moines man charged with threat of terrorism

Benjamin Joel Havick, 44, of Des Moines was arrested Thursday on a charge of threat of terrorism.

A Des Moines man was arrested on a Dallas County warrant Thursday in connection with a March incident in which he threatened to harm the children of a West Des Moines woman who blocked him on social media and to shoot up or blow up a Waukee school.

Benjamin Joel Havick, 44, of 1723 Grand Ave., Des Moines, was charged with threat of terrorism.

Havick “was residing in Japan” on March 10, 2021, when the alleged “threats of terrorism” were made via Twitter, according to court records. He returned to the U.S. in mid-April and was arrested on a Polk County warrant on related charges.

Havick was convicted of first-degree harassment June 17 in Polk County District Court in connection with the incident involving the West Des Moines woman, about whom Havick “sent tweets out stating that he was going to rape and kill the victim’s children” and that he “was going to blow up a local high school over the fact that the victim ceased contact with him,” according to court records.

The Dallas County arrest warrant was ordered in April after the Waukee Police Department investigated a Twitter post in which Havick allegedly threatened “a major school shooting in Waukee,” according to court records.

Having determined that Havick “displayed a pattern of threatening violence on schools” via social media, the Waukee Police Department contacted the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation, which “confirmed that Havick was still in Japan” and said they “would be sending agents to speak with him,” according to court records.

Havick is held in the Dallas County Jail without bond in advance of an initial appearance in Dallas County District Court.

*A criminal charge is merely an accusation, and the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.


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