College student pleads not guilty in Facebook threats to Obama

Miami HeraldMarch 9, 2012 

A Miami Dade College student accused of threatening to kill President Barack Obama on Facebook pleaded not guilty Friday morning in federal court.

Joaquin Amador Serrapio Jr., 20, was charged and pleaded not guilty before federal magistrate Patrick A. White, who set his cash bond at $20,000, in addition to a $50,000 personal surety bond that his parents signed, according to court records. Serrapio made no comments in court, but he was apologetic in an interview with The Miami Herald last week.

Serrapio was arrested at his home on Feb. 24 by the Secret Service after authorities say he posted threats on Facebook against Obama, who two days later spoke at the University of Miami’s BankUnited Center in Coral Gables

Federal agents took Serrapio from his home in the 200 block of Southwest 136th Place in West Miami-Dade, the complaint said. According to the criminal complaint, officials found an Apple iPad that showed the postings and an Airsoft pellet gun.

Alan Ross, Serrapio’s attorney, said Serrapio had no intention of hurting the president and “wants to apologize.”

“It was just a joke. I truly regret it,” Serrapio said in a phone interview earlier this month. “I’ll learn from it. I do regret it, but it was just all so unnecessary. I’m not going to see this as a stumbling block, but as a stepping stone. I will never touch Facebook again, never.”

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