Threats Cause College Station Pride Picnic to be Cancelled
A planned annual LGBT event in College Station was cancelled after threats of violence against the event surfaced online.
College Station's Pride Community Center's Annual Picnic was originally set to take place on July 10th, but was cancelled after threats against the event were discovered on the website Tumblr. LGBT activist Mandy Perry from Pennsylvania found a post on Tumblr that showed a flier for the event and the line, "Lock and load. Time to make the news." Perry came across the post while attempting to block the user after he used hate speech on Perry's own Tumblr page. Perry used the information on the picture of the flier to get in touch with the Pride Community Center on Facebook to warn them of the post and also informed the FBI.
Judy LeUnes, former president of College Station’s Pride Community Center, noted that the organization was expecting roughly 500 guests at the picnic, and the organization had already paid officers to provide security before being made aware of the threats,
We were already at a heighten state of security. We just felt like there wasn't a way to keep everyone safe.
College Station Police released a statement regarding the threats, noting that officials with Tumblr have failed to respond to subpoenas requesting information on the poster,
On Wednesday, June 29, members of the Pride Community Board of Directors received notice of a threat made against their annual picnic on the social media app Tumblr. They reported the threat to CSPD. CSPD investigators, in conjunction with the FBI, began attempting to identify the source of the threat. A subpoena was served on Tumblr requesting information to identify the poster. On June 30, CSPD received another report of the threat from a member of the community. By the morning of July 1, Tumblr had not responded to the subpoena, so CSPD again served them requesting the information to identify the poster. As of 5:00 PM on July 1, there was still no response from Tumblr. With no ability to determine the credibility of the threat, members of the Pride Board opted to cancel the picnic in the interest of public safety. Despite the cancellation, CSPD investigators will continue to follow up on the situation and will work with the FBI to identify any potential charges.
According to KBTX, organizers hope to reschedule the event, though a potential new date hasn't been announced.