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Police: Man allegedly made phone threats to watch police response

Tom G. Rohrbach

Tom G. Rohrbach

A 46-year-old New Lenox man charged Wednesday with making 911 calls threatening massacres at Frankfort and New Lenox high schools told police he did it because “he enjoyed watching the police response,”  said Will County Sheriff’s Police spokesman Ken Kaupas.

On one occasion, Tom G. Rohrbach of the 700 block of Lisson Grove “timed us with a stop watch,” Kaupas said.
Rohrbach is scheduled to appear in court May 23 on two counts of terrorism/making a false threat and multiple counts of disorderly conduct in connection with the bogus emergency calls from March 6 through April 30.

Kaupas said investigators were unable to trace the calls because something had been done to Rohrbach’s phone that kept the calls anonymous. “It was very frustrating,” he said.

But in April, “good, old-fashioned police work” trumped technology, Kaupas said.

New Lenox Police, responding to 911 calls directing police to the Wellington subdivision on March 27 and April 3 in connection with threatened random public gunplay and on April 8 for a threatened suicide on Lisson Grove, noticed Rohrbach at the scene each time, Kaupas said. “He seemed to be standing out in the crowd,” Kaupas said. After the first call, “they began putting things together,” he said.

The New Lenox officers interviewed Rohrbac, then contacted sheriff’s police, who developed a case against him. Kaupas said

Will County State’s Attorney spokesman Charles Pelkie said the two most serious charges allege Rohrbach told 911 dispatchers on March 6 “he had guns and was going to Lincoln-Way High School ‘to shoot it up,’ and that he called 911 on April 30 threatening “to shoot up” both high schools. Lincoln-Way Central in New Lenox is a little more than six blocks from his home. Lincoln-Way North in Frankfort is approximately nine miles away.

According to the charging document, Rohrbach also threatened “to shoot up” Lisson Grove Street on March 23 and Bishop’s Gate on April 3 and to kill himself on April 8. On April 17, Rohrbach allegedly called 911 to say “he had his target and he was going to shoot it,” Pelkie said.

Kaupas said Rohrbach had “no weapons whatsoever in his home” and there is no indication he ever had any.

“He was very apologetic for his actions,” Kaupas said.

Rohrbach is unemployed, but previously was a commercial truck driver, according to Will County booking information and court records.

A Lincoln-Way High School spokesman didn’t immediately return a phone call.

Rohrbach remained in the Will County Adult Detention Facility in lieu of $75,000.

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