Former UI student arrested for threatening social media post


On Monday evening, University police were alerted to an anonymous post on the University subreddit made by a former student threatening to “shoot up the school.”

The former student, Jonathan Zheng, included “additional threatening content,” according to a statement by the University of Illinois Division of Public Safety.

According to the statement, Zheng had been previously dismissed from the University. Additional details of the dismissal are not available. 

Zheng was “booked into Pasco County Jail early Tuesday morning,” as federal authorities are working with the University of Illinois Police Department to “explore additional charges,” the statement said.

Zheng lives in Wesley Chapel, Florida. The former student was arrested by the Pasco Sheriff’s Office with a preliminary charge of “Written Threats to Kill or Conduct a Mass Shooting,” according to the statement. 

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    UIPD Police Chief Alice Cary said the arrest depended on communication between the community member who noticed the post, PSO and UIPD.

    In a post to the University subreddit, UIPD urged community members to report any “alarming activity” and said that “information-sharing is extremely important to giving law enforcement the opportunity to respond as quickly as possible and keep the community safe.”


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