Richmond County Man Pleads Guilty to Federal Charge in Social Security Office Bomb Threat

A Richmond County man, Keyon Tishaye Dickens, aged 38, has entered a guilty plea to a federal charge linked to a bomb threat directed at the Social Security Administration’s Augusta office.

Jill E. Steinberg, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Georgia, confirmed that Dickens admitted guilt to “Using a Telephone to Make a Threat to Injure a Person or Damage a Building by Explosives.” This plea could lead to a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison, with no possibility of parole in the federal system.

According to details outlined in the plea agreement, Dickens received a notice in September 2023 regarding the Social Security Administration’s plan to recoup overpayments from his Supplemental Security Income in future checks. Subsequently, he called the Augusta office to express his grievances, during which he made threatening remarks including, “I’m going to shoot the office up and I’m going to blow it up. I haven’t decided yet what I’m going to do.”

Following this call, Dickens visited the office carrying a backpack and displayed a note reading “I have a bomb” to a security officer. Promptly, the officer alerted the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office, leading to the lockdown and evacuation of the premises. Fortunately, no explosive device was discovered, and Dickens was apprehended by Richmond County deputies.

U.S. District Court Judge J. Randal Hall will schedule Dickens’s sentencing following a pre-sentence investigation by U.S. Probation Services.

The investigation into the case was conducted jointly by the FBI, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, the Social Security Administration Office of the Inspector General, and the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office. Assistant U.S. Attorney George J.C. Jacobs III is prosecuting the case on behalf of the United States.