South Side man pleads guilty to threatening phone call

The man who threatened to blow up an area elementary school was placed on probation for two years Monday.

Lawrence P. Stabler, 81, of 554 Main St., South Williamsport, was sentenced after he pleaded guilty to a charge of terroristic threats for leaving the voicemail that shook students, faculty and staff at Donald E. Schick Elementary School in early October. The school contacted state police shortly after they were aware of the message.

Stabler said again Monday that he didn’t mean to call the school. He’d been receiving unwanted calls from a number for about three months before he hit redial. When he returned a call to what he thought was the same number, he left the voicemail on the elementary school’s system.

The message Stabler left said: “If you don’t stop calling this number, I’m going to find out what your (expletive) address is and believe me, three sticks of dynamite will get rid of you and all your (expletives),” according to a police affidavit.

The first time the notion that the call was accidentally placed on the elementary school’s voicemail was during Stabler’s arraignment. He said then that he was receiving a “whole bunch of calls” from a number he didn’t know. Each time they called, they were silent and breathing deeply. Stabler snapped on Oct. 5 when he received the same type of call. “I hit the re-dial. I flew off the handle. I won’t deny that,” Stabler then said.

Stabler was initially charged with three distinct felony counts of terroristic threats, bomb threats, harassment and disorderly conduct. By pleading guilty Monday, he accepted his sentence on the single felony count.