Over in Lexington, a University of Kentucky senior Political Science student named Steven Kennedy reportedly sent an email to UK associate vice president Terry Allen, along with an image of the Joker from the new Batman movie, The Dark Knight. If Mr. Kennedy intended this as some sort of joke, he missed his mark by a wide margin.
Evidently Kennedy, 28, was disappointed with the way UK officials had handled a racial discrimination complaint he had filed earlier. In a warrant filed by university officials in Fayette District Court, it is alleged that Kennedy sent a series of emails to UK officials, and that the one that included the photo of the Joker, holding a playing card. This apparently caused UK officials considerable consternation.
UK Police Chief Joe Monroe issued a statement, saying, "With the recent events across the country dealing with the mass shooting in Colorado with the Joker issue, it was kind of alarming to that vice president, who felt threatened."
UK officials considered Kennedy’s email as something of a threat, in light of the recent mass killing in Aurora, Colo., at a premiere showing of The Dark Knight Rises, according to the warrant. The man charged in the Colorado shooting, in which 12 were killed and 58 injured, dyed his hair red and reportedly called himself Joker. "With the recent shootings in Colorado, Mr. Allen fears that Kennedy means to do harm" to him, the warrant said.
Kennedy was arrested on a charge of Third Degree Terroristic Threatening, and entered a plea of not guilty to the misdemeanor yesterday at his arraignment in Fayette District Court; at which time Judge Kim Wilkie released him on partially secured $2,500.00 bail, and appointed a Public Defender to represent him. He is scheduled to appear before Judge T. Bruce Bell on August 8, for a pretrial conference.