October 20, 2014


Police: Bomb threat suspect wanted to go back to prison

Matthew McClain

Matthew McClain

ELYRIA — A man who was arrested on Monday for threatening multiple times to blow up stores in and around Midway Mall had been convicted of a similar crime before and told officers he wanted to go back to prison, according to police.

Matthew McClain, 30, a homeless Elyria man, was charged with three counts of inducing panic about 11:30 a.m. Monday at a local hospital, according to Elyria police Capt. Chris Costantino.

The arrest came after police responded to multiple bomb threats near Midway Mall on Saturday and Sunday.

The first threat came in about 3:30 p.m. Saturday when McClain called Best Buy in Midway Mall and told the employee who answered that she should get everyone out of the store because he was going to blow it up, according to Costantino.

A few minutes later, McClain called the store again and asked, “Do you remember me?” before repeating his threat.

The store was evacuated, and officers searched the area but found no evidence of a bomb, Costantino said.

The next series of threats came a day later when McClain called Target on 240 Market Drive and threatened to blow up the store adding, “Target, bye-bye,” before he hung up, according to police.

McClain called back several times with the same threat shortly after the first call.

Again, police searched the area but found no evidence of a bomb.

Around the same time, McClain placed another call to Best Buy in Midway Mall, threatening again to blow up the store.

“You’re going to explode,” McClain said to the Best Buy employee, according to Costantino.

After finding nothing at Best Buy, police received a tip that McClain had admitted to someone else that he was behind the threats.

McClain was taken into custody at a local hospital where he was being treated and admitted to making the threats, according to police.

“He said something about wanting to go back to prison,” Costantino said.

According to Elyria Municipal Court records, McClain was found guilty of making a threat and inducing panic in an incident at the same Target store in 2007.

McClain was sentenced to four years in prison in 2009 after he pleaded guilty to two counts of felonious assault and one count of vandalism.

Contact Anna Merriman at 329-7245 or amerriman@chroniclet.com. Follow her on Twitter at @AnnaLMerriman.

  • golfingirl

    Grant him his wish….send him back to prison!

    Probably because he heard Matt Lundy is enhancing the menu.

  • Chan

    I hope he gets the help he needs.

  • Sis Delish

    If the Lefties had their way, the store named “Target” would have to change its name… and, BestBuy would be BestHandout.

  • FoodForThought63

    Why wouldn’t he want to go back? 3 hot meals, a bed to sleep in with a/c, more than some people have on the outside

    • Mark B

      If prison was actually punishment like it was meant to be. Should be working 14 hours a day hard labor and then there would be very few wanting to go back , or go to prison in the first place .

      • Creepy Gun Toting Cracker

        Send him to a VA facility….. that will scare him…

  • saltydog77

    Its strange (but understandable) why this man would choose prison over freedom. With winter not far off I can see his motivation. I usually side with conservatives but this time I would like to see this man get the help he needs if possible.

    • Mark B

      Would help include a job that makes it possible for him to support himself ?

  • Teresa Walker-Murphy

    Im familiar with him in the system and he needs professional mental health help. . More than likely he feels like prison is his home. Most people don’t like to go to prison but you have people with mental health issues that have nothing and no help.

    • oldruss

      Does he not know the difference between right and wrong or does he suffer some mental disease or defect so that he cannot control his actions?
      End of story.

    • Bob

      Then he should be in a state hospital.

      • Jeff

        Let the Cleansing begin!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      • Teresa Walker-Murphy

        Most ar e sent to prison because we dont have enough mental health facilities to hold them..