Strasburg man indicted on bomb threat charges

Steven Hammond

A man who once briefly worked with the Strasburg Police Department is facing bomb threat charges in Winchester City Circuit Court after being indicted on Tuesday.

Steven Hammond, 60, first appeared in Winchester General District Court in May on charges of making a bomb threat and setting off an emergency alarm without a cause.

An arrest warrant filed for Hammond states that the Winchester Fire & Rescue Department responded to the George Washington Hotel at around 8:21 a.m. April 2 for a fire alarm. A hotel manager reported that a male had called the front desk from within the hotel and said there were bombs in the building. After the alarm went off, a white man “dropped a bag at the front desk and ran outside.” The building was evacuated.

Shortly afterward, a Winchester police officer found a man matching the description of the man who fled the building. The Winchester Police Department later identified the man as Hammond. According to the warrant, Hammond made statements about assassinating Donald Trump and calling the White House, and officers detained him on an emergency custody order, taking him to Winchester Medical Center.

The warrant states that Hammond said there was a bomb in the bag left at the hotel and explosives in the building. A Winchester Police Department release from April states that law enforcement determined both the bag and the hotel to be safe.

Keys to a car belonging to Hammond were found in the room that the threatening call came from, the warrant states.

Strasburg Police Chief Tim Sutherly said that Hammond was a probationary police officer around the early 1980s, but was not with the department for very long.

Sutherly said Hammond was never formally trained and hadn’t gone to the police academy.

Hammond is being held at Northwestern Regional Adult Detention Center and is scheduled for a bond hearing in Winchester Circuit Court on Monday, according to online records.

Contact staff writer Rachel Mahoney at 540-465-5137 ext. 164, or rmahoney@nvdaily.com.