Former "Silicon Valley" star T.J. Miller was arrested Monday night at New York's LaGuardia Airport after allegedly calling in a false bomb threat aboard a train. The actor and comedian appeared in court in New Haven on Tuesday and was released on a $100,000 bond.
Miller has been charged with a federal criminal complaint for "intentionally conveying to law enforcement false information about an explosive device on a train traveling to Connecticut," according to a press statement from the U.S. Attorney for the District of Connecticut. The charge carries a maximum prison term of five years.
The criminal complaint alleges that on March 18, Miller called 911 in New Jersey and said he was on Amtrak Train 2256 from Washington, D.C. to New York. He told the dispatcher that a woman had "a bomb in her bag," and described her as having brown hair and a scarf. But when Amtrak officials stopped the train in Westport, Connecticut and had passengers get off the train for inspection, they did not find any explosive devices or materials.
The complaint then says an investigator called Miller, who was in New York. This time, he said that the woman had red hair and a red scarf and was carrying a "black bag carry-on suitcase with a handle." Miller said that the woman kept checking her bag without taking anything out and asking what the next stop was. The investigator noticed Miller was slurring his words and asked him if he had consumed alcohol, and the actor claimed that he had had "one glass of red wine." The officer also asked Miller if he was mentally ill, and he responded, "No, absolutely not. This is the first time I've ever made a call like this before. I am worried for everyone on that train. Someone has to check that lady out."
Miller was on Amtrak Train 2258, not 2256, it turned out. Authorities inspected that train as well, which was not found to have any explosives.
The attendant from the First Class car where Miller had been seated said that he appeared intoxicated when he boarded in Washington, and had consumed multiple drinks on the train. He was subsequently removed in New York because of his intoxication.
The attendant also said Miller had had hostile exchanges with a woman in the same car. Investigators found the woman, and determined that she did not have a suitcase with a handle or explosives. They also found that she was seated out of Miller's view, unless he had stood up to look at her over the seats.
The criminal complaint alleges that Miller called 911 because he wanted to file false information about the woman because of his hostility toward her.
U.S. Attorney for the District of Connecticut John Durham pointed out that a complaint is only a charge and is not evidence of guilt. The FBI's Joint Terrorism Task Force, Connecticut State Police, Metropolitan Transportation Authority Police Department, Amtrak Police Department and Westport Police Department are still investigating the matter.
This is not Miller's first brush with the law. He was. Miller was recently dropped from HBO's "Silicon Valley."