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Woman charged with faking threats against fellow black students

UNION, N.J. -- A former Kean University student was charged Tuesday with making fake threats against her fellow black students at the New Jersey school in an attempt to raise awareness of racism, authorities say.

Kayla-Simone McKelvey, of Union Township, faces one count of creating a false public alarm, which carries a maximum three- to five-year sentence.

The Union County prosecutor's office said McKelvey, 24, participated in a Nov. 17 rally on racial issues at Kean and then went to a campus library computer and posted anonymous threats on Twitter against black students. Investigators said McKelvey then returned to the rally and tried to raise awareness about the threats.

Security was increased at Kean after the threats were discovered, though classes weren't affected.

"As a diverse academic community, we wholeheartedly respect and support activism, however, no cause or issue gives anyone the right to threaten the safety of others," the school said, reports CBS New York. "We hope this information will begin to bring a sense of relief and security to the campus community."

It wasn't immediately known Tuesday if McKelvey had retained an attorney who could comment on the accusations, and The Associated Press couldn't find a phone number for her.

Kean President Dawood Farahi said in a statement posted on the school's Twitter account that the school was "saddened to learn that the person allegedly responsible was an active participant in the rally that took place on campus ... and is a former student of Kean."

"No cause or issue gives anyone the right to threaten the safety of others," Farahi said. "We hope this information will begin to bring a sense of relief and security to the campus community."

McKelvey is scheduled to make a court appearance in two weeks.

Earlier this week, authorities announced that an online threat against the University of Chicago that led the school to cancel all activities Monday appeared to have been motivated by the shooting of a black teenager by a Chicago officer in 2014.

Jabari Dean, 21, of Chicago, is charged with transmitting a threat in interstate commerce, according to a statement released by U.S. Attorney's Office in Illinois.

In a Thanksgiving weekend posting on a social media website, Dean stated that he would execute approximately sixteen students or staff members on the campus quad of the University of Chicago on Nov. 30, 2015, according to a criminal complaint and affidavit filed in U.S. District Court in Chicago.

The threat came days after a video was released showing Officer Jason Van Dyke shooting 17-year-old Laquan McDonald 16 times. It prompted several days of protests in the city.

Dean also stated in the posting that he would die "killing any number of white policemen that I can in the process," according to the complaint.