Tag Archives: Athens

Individual responsible for UGA threat identified, arrested

Less than nine hours after the events today at the University of Georgia began, the investigation into a threat posted on social media that forced an evacuation of the Miller Learning Center has concluded in an arrest.

In a report released by the University of Georgia Police Department, 19-year-old Ariel Omar Arias, a student at UGA from Liburn, Ga., was identified as responsible for disseminating the threat through social media. The police department has yet to confirm the exact wording of the threat or its source, though many student believe that it originated on the anonymous posting app Yik Yak.

Campus police were able to identify the culprit “through the investigation of a number of leads and with the cooperation and assistance of personnel associated with the social media outlet involved and cellular service providers.”

Arias admitted that he posted the threat in an interview, insisting that it was “the result of an immature prank and that he had no motive to follow through with any acts of violence.” Several reports issued to the police department regarding the threat mentioned the threat of fire arms.

Arias has been arrested on warrants charging him with two felony counts of terroristic threats and has been transported to the Clarke County Jail. Arias has also received an interim suspension from the University of Georgia.


(cover photo courtesy John Roark via The Red and Black)


UGA Police chief holds press conference in response to campus threat

UGA Police Chief Jimmy Williamson held a press conference at 2 p.m. to answer questions regarding the events that unfolded early today.

Inside Footage of Students evacuating the MLC
Inside Footage of Students evacuating the MLC (click to play)

A threat on social media prompted the evacuation of the Miller Learning Center on the University of Georgia’s campus around noon Friday. Campus police contacted students via UGA Alert Emergency Notification System emails, phone calls and text messages to stay away from the center, known as the MLC, until an all-clear was issued. At 1:12 p.m., an all-clear was announced and students were allowed to return to normal activities.

Chief Williamson would not reveal details regarding the exact wording of the threat or its source, though rumor among students say that it originated on the anonymous posting app Yik Yak. Williamson did confirm that the unspecified social media host is working with officials.

Williamson said an investigation is actively ongoing, and that while no violence occurred, all threats are taken seriously.

According to a media release issued by the University of Georgia Police Department, at approximately 11:35 a.m., “several reports from individuals that a threat of violence directed towards the area of the Miller Learning Center around noon had been disseminated through a social media outlet”. The threat was initially perceived as credible. Alerts were sent out to all students to avoid the area, as police evacuated the MLC and searched the building.

Williamson did comment that some reports mentioned the threat of the use of firearms, and that the threat was directed at the student body in general. The police are actively working with law enforcement and following leads, but no arrests have been made.


(cover photo courtesy Grady NewSource via Twitter)

The World is Your Oyster

NateHarris, Guest Writer

So this is college.

Today begins my fourth week of classes, and as such, the stress can finally kick in. Tests coming up, some tests already passing. Passing in the sense that they already occurred; whether or not they are passing in the sense of grades is dependent now solely on whether or not some higher being can forgive my sin of gluttony. I’m sorry, but you try living where there is literally an all-you-can-eat buffet twenty-four hours a day and not feel like you’ve delved into the world of obesity stock footage for 20/20. Freshman fifteen, more like freshman forty. But I digress.

If college has taught me one thing over the past near-month, it would be that there is never just one thing. The transition from elementary school to middle school introduces lockers and slightly more self-discipline. The transition to high school allowed you to eat outside and introduced the concept of school spirit. In college, you don’t have to go to class if you don’t want to (though I highly recommend you do, and if you don’t, you’ll learn…). The possibilities are nearly endless, the only thing limiting you being Georgia State Law. It’s a paid experience, and you decide what you experience.

Every day I discover something new that I never knew I had paid for with tuition. I went to the gym yesterday. Imagine anything you could want to do, and they have it in the athletic center. Full gym membership, paid for by student fees. We have a movie theater. We have ballroom dancing classes. We have students passionate about what they do, be it in their major or in the community. We have people who want to play music, and we have people who want to listen to that music. We have people who want to make the world a better place, be it through civil rights, environmental activism, helping the needy communities around us or bringing awareness to life-threatening diseases in other countries around the world. We have Athens. We have jocks, hipsters, nerds. We have stereotypes, we have cliques, but more importantly, we have the opportunity to open our eyes to the real world around us. “The world is our oyster.” Well, I for one am about to crack that baby open and do something with my life.

The key to college is to get involved, get out of your comfort zone. Do not sit in your room all day. Focus on classes, but when you have free time, let it be FREE time. Make friends, make enemies, explore the world around you, try something new. Go to a football game. Pull an all-nighter. Be the first at a dining hall. I did all of those at the same time. Be free, live life, and have fun.

It is a feeling like no other.

Go Dawgs.


(cover photo courtesy Nate Harris)

And So It Begins…

NateHarris, Guest Writer

So this is college.

I’m sitting in the gardens, my rear end comfortably supported by a small rustic-looking metal bench facing a small brick building. The roar of buses and cars softly echoes from the street to my left, the sight of them blocked by various trees and bushes. The squeaky chirp of a bird complements the traffic, rhythmically sounding off on my right. This place is relaxing. Nobody’s come by since the next round of classes started a few minutes ago, and I’m alone here with my thoughts and a keyboard on my lap.

So this is college.

The hustle of students of various shapes, sizes, ethnicity, gender, age and major trickle past me, the undisturbing chaos similar to salmon swimming upstream. I feel free, independent and alone, and yet at the same time, included, part of a greater whole collectively. I feel like I matter.

I’ve only had one class so far, so I won’t bore you with the details of English 1060H. I ate breakfast at the new dining hall. I got up without having my mom have to remind me to get up. I went to class. I bought a textbook. I did it all by myself. I’m not sure who’s keeping score, but I’m pretty sure I deserve some major bonus points for that.

So this is college.

I feel like I belong here.

I feel like I’m free.

I feel like this is a place I could call “home.”

I feel happy.


(cover photo courtesy The Red and Black)