A 70-year-old Norwalk man was sentenced to six months in prison Wednesday, exactly one year after he threatened to contaminate courts, schools and railroad stations with anthrax.
Fred Forcellina made an emergency call to Fairfield police on Oct. 16, 2001, saying the federal courthouse in Bridgeport and state courthouses in Norwalk and Stamford had been “dusted,” according to a transcript of the call. He also threatened to contaminate other public buildings. His claims turned out to be hoaxes.
Forcellina also said during the call that he was connected to the hijackers of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks and al-Qaida terrorists, prosecutors said.
In Bridgeport, U.S. District Court Judge Stefan Underhill handed down the prison term to Forcellina, who pleaded guilty in June to maliciously making false terrorist threats.
He had faced a maximum penalty of five years in prison and $250,000 in fines and restitution.
When Forcellina made the call, he was on his way to a hearing in Bridgeport federal court, where he had personal bankruptcy cases pending, according to court records. Meanwhile, Forcellina’s Norwalk house was facing foreclosure in state court in Stamford.
After Forcellina’s arrest, U.S. Magistrate Holly Fitzsimmons ordered a psychiatric evaluation. His lawyer, federal public defender Sarah Chambers, said at the time that his financial problems were being resolved.