After federal hearing, more about UK student accused of making threats


Haily Duvall, 19, a UK student, was charged with threatening interstate communications, false statements and false information in Federal District Court in Lexington on Friday, Nov. 16, 2018.

Rick Childress

Details of an alleged flight attempt and the mental and childhood history of Haily Duvall, a UK student accused of making online threats at UK’s campus earlier this month, were divulged during a federal court hearing in Lexington on Tuesday.

The hearing, held in Eastern Federal District Court in Lexington, comes after Duvall, 19, was arrested and charged by federal authorities last week. The U.S. charged Duvall with threatening interstate communications, false statements and false information. She was initially arrested and released by state authorities, but after federal charges were brought, Duvall was arrested again.

Through two witnesses called by the prosecution during the hearing, the government alleges that Duvall tried to evade arrest when they were trying to arrest her, and both sides established that she had had a rough childhood and had a history of mental health diagnoses. 

Judge Matthew Stinnett presided over the hearings, which were held mainly to decide to pass the case onto a grand jury and to decide whether or not to release her on bond prior to any other court hearings. She has spent the last two weeks in the Woodford County Detention Center.

Duvall, who was a pre-nursing sophomore who also worked at UK HealthCare facilities, was originally arrested in the early morning hours of Thursday, Nov. 8, after she allegedly had been making threats against UK’s campus via Snapchat the day prior. She was charged in state court with second degree terroristic threatening and filing a false police report. 

The threats plunged UK into uncertainty, causing classes to be cancelled en masse. During the morning following her arrest, UK’s White Hall classroom—which was directly mentioned in one of the Snapchat threats— was nearly devoid of students. 

Andy Boone, the prosecuting attorney representing the United States, argued that Duvall should remain detained. He argued ultimately that she was a flight risk and to aid in his argument he first called Officer William Jackson to the stand.

Jackson said he was a detective with the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force and was also employed by UK in investigating other crimes. He said he’d investigated terrorism threats against schools and colleges since 2008. For the duration of much of the incident, UKPD had involved him in the investigation of the threats directed against UK’s campus in early November.

Duvall told the Kernel and other local media outlets, prior to the arrest, that she had been one of the first to report the threats to UK police and that she had assisted in the investigation. 

When he was first notified of the threats, Jackson told the court that he was told by UKPD Chief Joe Monroe to determine the identity of the sender of the threats. He said during the day and night preceding an arrest the police had received 26 different tips on the identity of the sender from as far away as New York. He said that UK gets threats of this nature every couple of months.

According to an arrest citation, Duvall provided the police with two separate Snapchat usernames for the accounts that were sending the threats. Those accounts were tracked through the app’s emergency disclosures. Through the emergency disclosures, the police were able to pinpoint that the accounts were connected to an IP address under Duvall’s name and at her home address. 

Jackson said he was present at her first arrest, and that he’d interviewed at her apartment where she was first brought into custody. He said that Duvall admitted to him that she was the sender of the threats. She was released on bail just a day after she was arrested by state authorities.

Federal authorities decided to charge Duvall, and needed to arrest her again, Jackson said. He said he called Duvall and told her to meet him at her apartment because he had some paperwork for her to fill out.

“There was no paperwork,” Jackson said.

The plan, he suggested, was that he and a number of other officers positioned in cruisers in the area were going to attempt to arrest her when she’d arrived. 

He said another officer in another cruiser identified Duvall in a vehicle heading in the general direction of the apartment around the time that she’d agreed to meet Jackson. Officers observed Duvall drive past multiple entrances and drive off in a another direction. A cruiser that was following her initiated a traffic stop and Duvall immediately pulled over and asked officers if she was under arrest.

When Jackson arrived at the scene of the traffic stop, he said he asked Duvall where she was going.

“She shrugged her shoulders,” Jackson said.

Duvall was arrested and taken into federal custody. Jackson and the prosecution said that Duvall’s actions constituted a flight attempt. 

Upon cross examination from defense attorney, Jay Oakley, Jackson said that police have not been able to find any bomb-making material, literature or any indication that Duvall intended to follow up on her allegedly threatening actions. 

Next, the prosecution called Officer Jeffrey Troy Brown to the stand, a U.S. probation officer who had interviewed Duvall and her mother and had written about his findings in a bond report.

Brown told the court that Duvall had told her of her mental health history and some details of her upbringing and childhood. She told him that she had been diagnosed with ADHD in 2007 and bipolar disorder in 2012. He said that she had told him that she’d harmed herself in the past, but the last time was in 2011. 

He said she grew up in foster care, and had received ongoing ADHD care from 2007 to 2012 and did not need it again until 2017 after an incident with her mother when she said she’d called the police to leave her custody. Her mother confirmed the existence of an incident and said Duvall was too difficult for her to handle. 

Brown recommended that Duvall remain in detention. Upon cross-examination, Oakley asked Brown if he thought Duvall had been raised in a difficult home life. Brown assented.

“She was subjected to some things that some in this courtroom have never experienced, correct?” Oakley, the defense attorney, asked.

“Yes, sir,” Brown said.

In closing arguments, the prosecution continued to argue that Duvall should remain in detention because she’s a flight risk. The defense argued that she ought to be released with some sort of probation as she posed no risk to anyone. Oakley said he’d spent a lot of time with Duvall.

“My client has overcome a whole lot in this life,” Oakley told the judge. “A whole lot.”

He said she’s articulate and well-read and added that she’s not a bad person just never “truly appreciated what would have happened because of her actions.”

“It’s the holidays, judge,” Oakley said.

After a conference with one of the witnesses and both attorneys at his desk, Judge Stinnett told Duvall that he has a lot to consider in regards to whether or not she is released, but he said he would work his hardest to render a decision by Wednesday afternoon.

“I know what Thursday is,” Stinnett said, referring to Thanksgiving.

Read up on the rest of the Kernel’s coverage:

A timeline recapping Duvall’s online messages and alleged actions leading up to her arrest

‘We love her.’ Local pastor offers to help Duvall in court

Duvall’s interview with the Kernel

VIDEO: Campus responds to threats