Pennsylvania woman gets jail time for threats to youth football officials

Guardian sport
A Pennsylvania woman faces jail time for her role in threatening youth football league officials. Photograph: John Greim/LightRocket via Getty Images

A Pennsylvania woman has been sentenced to up to two years in jail for her part in making threats to youth football league officials that prompted the cancellation of the season.

Kimberly Ross, 35, was ordered on Monday by Westminster county judge Christopher Feliciani to serve six to 23 months in jail and pay $16,000 in restitution to the Mt Pleasant Area Junior Football League.

Ross pleaded guilty last year to charges of making terroristic threats, conspiracy and harassment for helping a co-worker, Joseph V Loughner, write threatening letters to the president and secretary of the youth sports league, based 35 miles southeast of Pittsburgh, in response to rule changes involving weight limits for players.

Last year, Loughner, 52, pleaded guilty to a similar slate of charges after confessing to sending the threatening letters, avoiding felony charges in the plea deal. He was sentenced in January to four months of house arrest, five years of probation and ordered to pay $16,000 in restitution.

Police said Ross and Loughner, who worked together at a local restaurant, sent letters to a referee in September 2015 that prompted his resignation. Authorities later found 40 bullet casings, some with the names of league officials written on them in permanent marker, by the gate to the field where league games took place.

A subsequent letter to the league president stated: “Now this is a threat, if one more kid gets hurt, I will kill you. Take it any way you want it and to the cops if you like. That is a promise. Take it to your grave.”

Police believed that Loughner dictated the copy to Ross so the letters would not appear in his handwriting.

Ross’ sentence included jail time due to prior offenses in nearby Fayette county. She is currently in the the county jail awaiting trail on robbery charges stemming from an unrelated incident. 

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