SHERIDAN - A man accused of calling in bomb threats to the county courthouse and two schools told a newspaper that he was high on methamphetamine and was trying to avoid going to court on a probation violation.
Police said Thomas Mines, 23, of Sheridan, made the calls Wednesday to the courthouse, Sheridan High School and Sheridan Junior High School.
He was charged with three counts of terroristic threats.
"I was in my own world," Mines said in a jail interview with The Sheridan Press. "I wanted to stay out for another day. It wasn't the best way to do it."
Sgt. Tom Ringley said Mines, a registered sex offender, was arrested at his mother-in-law's house after police examined phone records.
Mines said he called in the bomb threats because he knew that if he went to court for violating probation for burglary, he would be sent to jail for three to five years. He also said he wanted to delay going to jail for one day to spend time with his wife and child.
He was headed back to court on Friday.
The courthouse was not evacuated, but the two schools were and staff helped police look for anything suspicious. No bombs were found in the schools or the courthouse.
Mines said that when he called the courthouse, he felt that the person who answered the phone didn't understand him. So he said he called the schools to say there was a bomb at the courthouse.
But Sheridan High School Principal Dirlene Wheeler disputed that.
"I don't know what he thinks he said, but he said there is a bomb at the high school," Wheeler said.
Mines said he made the first call to the courthouse from a pay phone at a convenience store. He said he called the schools from his mother-in-law's house.