Cops: Soccer fan arrested in Twitter shooting threat
A high school soccer fan was arrested after he sent a tweet threatening to shoot someone at last night's Suffolk Class AA boys championship game if the team he was rooting for didn't win, police said.
Mario Cernas, 19, of Bay Shore, was charged with making a terroristic threat, a Class D felony, Suffolk County police said. He was arraigned Thursday and held pending a bail of $50,000 bond or $25,000 cash. He was represented by Legal Aid.
Cernas, who is no longer in high school, tweeted the threat on Monday about the game between Smithtown West and Central Islip scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Thursday at the Dowling College Sports Complex in Shirley, police said. There were no arrests or incidents at the game, police said afterward.
Det. Lt. Kevin Beyrer, commander of the Suffolk Third Squad, said Cernas, of 1770 Stein Dr., was a fan of "an uninvolved school" who then "shifted allegiance" to one of the finalists once his original team was eliminated from postseason play.
Beyrer said the tweet Cernas sent said "if that team didn't win he would shoot people."
The tweet indicated Cernas wanted Central Islip to win and warned, if it didn't, "Im shooting some one at Dowling." On the same day of the tweet, Central Islip beat Huntington, 1-0, in overtime in the semifinals, while Smithtown West beat Brentwood, 3-2, in overtime.
At Cernas' arraignment, a prosecutor said Cernas also tweeted "Someone's gonna die tonight" after Brentwood lost.
Beyrer said Smithtown West school officials learned of the threat and notified Central Islip, whose officials then contacted police. Cernas was arrested at his home Wednesday, police said. No weapons were recovered, Beyrer said.
With Ellen Yan