Last week’s bomb threat at Northern Neck Regional Jail was made using the Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) phone, a free third-party line required by federal law to allow inmates to report sexual assault.
Monday morning Richmond County Sheriff’s Office contacted NNRJ informing them a bomb threat was reported from inside the facility using the PREA line.
The call prompted response from the Warsaw and Richmond County police departments as well as the Virginia State Police, which brought in bomb arson investigators.
No device was discovered and no one was injured during the response effort.
“The matter has been closed and is considered a false report,” said NNRJ superintendent Ted Hull.
However, Virginia State Police have charged John A. Wainwright, an NNRJ inmate, with making threats to bomb or damage a building, a Class 5 felony and falsely summoning the police, a Class 1 misdemeanor.
Wainwright is believed to be the individual who made the call to the Richmond County police. Hull explained that the PREA line is available to all inmates during normal phone usage hours.
Hull said Wainwright acted alone. No motive was provided for making the false report, but Wainwright “has exhibited extremely poor institutional adjustment and has presented multiple behavioral management issues,” said Hull.