PULLMAN, Wash. – The Washington State University student accused of making bomb threats in a dormitory hall previously seemed to take pride in his school according to school administrators.
Jose Tecuatl worked as a resident advisor at Stimson Hall where the bomb threats were reported. WSU administrators said Wednesday the arrest took them by total surprise because Tecuatl appeared to be a dedicated student.
Tecuatl is also accused of drawing swastikas on the walls at WSU. He now faces several charges including threatening to bomb.
As a resident advisor at WSU, administrators said Tecuatl’s mission was clear cut; to maintain safety and order on his dorm floor. And by all accounts, the 18-year-old was the right fit for the job, not that it was an easy job to obtain.
WSU administrators said becoming a resident advisor is a strict, stringent process. To qualify, the student must pass a criminal background check. They are also required to take and pass a special leadership course as well as to attend pre-service training.
As for the application phase, administrators explained students are required to be interviewed several times, including by a committee. Records show Tecuatl aced the process with no apparent problems.
“The threat itself said that if anything were to happen, it would happen at 2:00 p.m. that afternoon,” said WSU Spokesperson Phil Weiler.
Pullman police said they linked Tecuatl to the threats after they found evidence on his computer. While his exact origin is not known, educators said Tecuatl held a California driver’s license. As of Wednesday night, Tecuatl is held at Whitman County Jail without bail.
Tecuatl is still considered a WSU student. Administrators said expulsion is always an option but they insist any decisions will be made pending Tecuatl’s expected court trial.