A federal grand jury issued a new indictment against a Massachusetts woman who has previously been charged with making a hoax bomb threat against Boston Children's Hospital this August.
Catherine Leavy of Westfield now faces charges of making a false bomb threat and of sharing false or misleading information that a bomb was heading to the renowned hospital, the U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Massachusetts said Friday.
Leavy, 37, was arrested last month in the Aug. 30 hoax bomb threat. She was released on conditions including keeping away from the hospital after a detention hearing at the time, and will appear in court on the new grand jury charges later, federal prosecutors said.
Boston Children's Hospital was dealing with a spate of threats focused on its Gender Multispeciality Service program, which offers gender-affirming care to children. The hospital warned its staff about the campaign, which federal agents started monitoring in August.
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Far-right social media accounts, news outlets and bloggers began focusing on Boston Children's after informational YouTube videos published by the hospital about surgical offerings for transgender patients were shared. People on social media accused the hospital of improperly performing hysterectomies on children, though the hospital only performs such procedures on adults, not children.
The Aug. 30 threat Leavy has been charged with prompted a lockdown, but a sweep of the hospital by a bomb squad found no threats. Authorities traced the caller's ID back to Leavy, prosecutors said, and she allegedly admitted to making the call, expressing disapproval of the hospital several times during her interview with federal agents.
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If Leavy is convicted, she faces up to 10 years in prison for making a false bomb threat and up to five years in prison for giving false or misleading information.