The Pittsburgh Steelers begin their 2018 AFC playoff drive Sunday with a divisional round matchup against the Jacksonville Jaguars. But one deranged individual apparently didn’t want to the Steelers advance and planned to take his grudge against the team to dangerous extremes.
As reported by San Antonio’s KSAT-TV, a local man sent a message to Pittsburgh TV station KDKA which included threats to kill several Steelers players, fans at Heinz Field, and himself. KSAT got a copy of the note from Yuttana Choochongkol, 30, as part of an arrest affadavit, which reads as follows:
“This Sunday’s playoff game in Pittsburgh is going to be like no other. Why? Because it’s going to be my last day on this pathetic planet. So why not take some innocent lives with me? The Steelers game will be packed, and that’s when I plan on killing Steelers football players and fans before taking my own pitiful life. After all, what does a person that is going to commit suicide have to lose? Absolutely nothing. So why not take out some million dollar Steelers players before me? Sounds like a good idea. Hahahahahah”
Declaring that Sunday would be his last day on Earth and that he would take innocent lives with him is obviously terrifying. How exactly Choochongkol planned on carrying out his fatal scheme isn’t known, but if authorities have that information, it’s not something that should be shared with the public.
It’s certainly possible that Choochongkol just wanted to make a grand declaration, hoping that this suicide mission would generate publicity and infamy for him. Whether or not he actually intended to travel to Pittsburgh, Choochongkol was arrested before he could do so. Thankfully, it appears he didn’t think this crazed plot all the way through.
Choochongkol was identified when KDKA and Heinz Field security officials sent the message to federal authorities. According to KSAT, the IP address that the message originated from was traced to Choochongkol and linked to Worldwide Clinical Trials in San Antonio, where he had been a medical trial subject 25 times over the past six years.
He was charged with making a terroristic threat to the public. That’s a third-degree felony, for which Choochongkol faces a 10-year prison sentence.
The Steelers issued an official statement acknowledging the situation, and thanking local police and federal authorities for addressing the threat and making an arrest.
— Heather Crawford (@HeatherFCN) January 14, 2018
Pittsburgh mayor Bill Peduto also thanked authorities on Saturday night for their work in solving the matter.
Thank you @FBIPittsburgh & @PghPolice on your coordinated efforts. Although much of your work go unnoticed or protected, your continuous service to protect is constantly appreciated. https://t.co/FZi0N1Hgic
— bill peduto (@billpeduto) January 14, 2018