UC terror threat trial day 3: Tearful police interview

Day three of the terror threat trial of former Utica College student, Fahrudin Omerovic, brought jurors inside the Utica Police Department interview room March 6th- the day after threats put the college on lockdown.

Posted: Nov 28, 2018 6:09 PM
Updated: Nov 29, 2018 9:04 AM

UTICA, N.Y. - Day three of the terror threat trial of former Utica College student, Fahrudin Omerovic, brought jurors inside the Utica Police Department interview room March 6 - the day after threats put the college on lockdown.

At first, the room was filled with adamant denials from suspect Omerovic, that he had anything to do with the threatening phone calls that put the college on lockdown for six hours, terrorizing students and staff, back in March.

"I'm telling you, I did not do it," jurors heard Omerovic say, as a recording of the police interview, conducted March 6, played on a courtroom monitor. But after a while, Omerovic asked to leave the room and go for a walk with UPD Sgt. Dzenan Sabanovic, who had known Omerovic and his family for eight years.

Sabanovic told jurors from the witness stand on Wednesday that Omerovic insisted their conversation during the walk not be recorded on the police-issue body camera Sabanovic had brought. Sabanovic told jurors he obliged, but that he'd also brought an audio recorder, on which he did record the entire converstation. When the two returned to the interview room and joined UPD Investigator Robert Kopek, the denials were gone.

"And you did this why?" Officer Kopek asked. "I was stupid," replied Omerovic. "There's got to be some reason why besides a prank," said Kopek. "There really isn't," said Omerovic.

When Sabanovic told Omerovic he was being charged with a Class B felony and would spend the night at UPD, Omerovic began sobbing, expressing concern about how the news would affect his parents.

"This is gonna kill my parents," sobbed Omerovic. "If you want me to talk to them, I'll go to your house and talk to them," said Sabanovic. "This is going to kill them," repeated Omerovic. "I will personally go to your house and talk to them," replied Sabanovic. "That's gonna be even worse. This is gonna kill them," said Omerovic, sobbing uncontrollably.

Omerovic's attorney once again raised the issue of use of the drug, Adderall, and Adderall-induced psychosis. The officers said that Omerovic appeared unimpaired during the interview. Omerovic, himself, said he doesn't do drugs.  

Court wrapped up for the day around 4 p.m. Wednesday. Sgt. Sabanovic was on the stand, and will resume his testimony Thursday morning at 9:45 a.m.

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