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Charges against student dropped in USF bomb hoax

TAMPA — Prosecutors dropped charges Tuesday against one of the two men arrested after an Oct. 5 bomb hoax that halted activity at the University of South Florida for hours and forced a campuswide lockdown.

Vincent McCoy, 23, was on a Bull Runner shuttle bus when officials sent out an alert of an armed intruder on campus, according to arrest reports.

As a parking services employee got onto the rerouted bus to notify students of what was happening, McCoy said, "I got the bomb right here. No sudden moves," according to a Hillsborough County State Attorney's Office memo.

But interviews with witnesses revealed that McCoy made the comment as a response to the parking services employee's question if anyone had any David Letterman jokes, the memo said.

A bus rider also told prosecutors she was not concerned at the time because he said it in a joking manner. McCoy, a junior at USF, was originally charged with making a false bomb report against state property.

A USF graduate, 26-year-old Markenson Innocent, is charged with making the initial bomb threat that led to the three-hour campus shutdown.

McCoy's mother, Sonja McCoy, said Tuesday her family is not upset about her son being charged initially or the time he spent in jail because of the incident. "When I last spoke to him he only indicated that he was mad at himself [for making the comment]," Sonja McCoy said. "We aren't angry or upset because there is no one to be angry with. Everybody was doing their jobs."

McCoy is still being held at the Hillsborough county Jail on an unrelated charge of theft from a person 65 years or older.

Charges against student dropped in USF bomb hoax 11/03/09 [Last modified: Tuesday, November 3, 2009 11:47pm]
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