One day before a bloody attack inside a Boston ambulance, members of a terrorism task force questioned the alleged attacker in connection with bomb threats at multiple airports, the NBC10 Boston Investigators have learned.
State and federal police assigned to a Joint Terrorism Task Force interviewed 31-year-old Julie Tejeda Tuesday in connection with hoax bomb threats at multiple airports, including in Martha’s Vineyard and Washington, D.C., according to a statement issued by Massachusetts State Police and a Washington airports official.
Tejeda was in court Thursday after being arrested on charges of assault with intent to murder and other offenses in connection with Wednesday's attack, but didn't enter a plea, instead leaving for a psychological exam.
An EMT was stabbed in Wednesay's attack, losing "a terrific amount of blood," according to Boston's EMS chief, and her partner was hospitalized after being sprayed with a chemical like Mace. Over 100 EMTs crowded the Boston courthouse Thursday to show support for their injured coworkers.
Police who had investigated the bomb threats the day bfeore the attack also interviewed Tejeda’s family members and one of her friends, and obtained a warrant to seize her phone, police said.
“Investigators determined that Tejeda, who was cooperative, had no criminal history, had no history of violence against herself or others, exhibited no terroristic intentions, and had a support network of friends and family within the same household,” the Massachusetts State Police statement reads.
Authorities in Massachusetts learned of the bomb threat in Washington, D.C. early Tuesday morning. A woman called D.C. police and warned of a bomb at a D.C. airport, but did not specify which one, said Micah Lillard, a spokesman for the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority, which oversees operations at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport and Washington Dulles International Airport.
“Boston police responded to her home and determined the threat was not credible,” said Lillard, the D.C. airports spokesman.
Staff in the operations office at Martha’s Vineyard Airport also received a bomb threat call at 6:04 a.m. Tuesday. The facility was evacuated and it remained closed for more than three hours while state police used a bomb-sniffing dog to search the terminal and the grounds. State police confirmed Thursday that Tejeda was questioned in connection with the Martha’s Vineyard incident.
Tejeda is scheduled to appear in East Boston Municipal Court July 26 for a hearing on allegations of making a bomb threat.
The assault happened Wednesday afternoon inside an ambulance after the EMTs responded to a call of a possibly "emotionally disturbed" person.
As the three were on the way from East Boston to Massachusetts General Hospital, Tejeda allegedly became combative.
She allegedly stabbed one of the EMTs four times while the ambulance was traveling near Government Center, Michael MacNeil, the president of the EMS union, told the NBC10 Boston Investigators.
A second EMT who was driving the ambulance pulled over to help the first victim but was sprayed with a Mace-like chemical by Tejeda, officials said.
"I can't say enough of the EMTs and paramedics who took care of her last night," Boston EMS Chief James Hooley said. "She did lose a terrific amount of blood, but the folks at Mass General did a terrific job because they all know her. She works in East Boston."
The EMT who was stabbed is a 14-year veteran of the force and her partner is a 10-year veteran.
The stabbing victim was released from Massachusetts General Hospital Thursday evening. She was reportedly awake and surrounded by loved ones and co-workers in the hospital on Wednesday night.
The second EMT was treated and released.