Blue Springs man charged with making terrorist threat during disturbance at Independence Center Sunday

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Jackson County prosecutors have filed charges against a 23-year-old Blue Springs man in connection to a disturbance incident Sunday afternoon at the Independence Center.

Rayvon C. Lewis was charged Monday with a class E felony of making a terrorist threat in the second degree.

According to court documents, Lewis displayed what appeared to be an assault rifle inside the Independence Center and pointed it in an aggressive manner towards a crowded food court.

Police say Lewis and multiple others had been involved in a physical altercation.

An Independence officer had to physically fight Lewis to get him into custody.

Police dispatch received multiple 911 calls, including one advising of four men armed with guns, waving them in the air stating “I will shoot.”

It was later learned that the guns were toy guns.

Detectives began scrolling social media and were able to obtain multiple videos and still photos regarding the incident. In one of the videos, Lewis is seen standing on an elevated surface in the food court of the Independence Center, closest to the restrooms. He is holding a rifle-style gun and pulls the slide back as if he is cocking the gun as it is pointed towards the roof. Lewis then jumps down off of the elevated surface and begins to walk into the food court area and points the gun into the food court towards someone.

The videos show the mall to have several customers in the food court as well as several customers on both upper and lower interior levels. After threatening with the toy gun, a physical altercation took place between Lewis and another man. Lewis appeared to continue to handle the toy gun in front of Panda Express. In one of the other videos, the video shows there to be dozens of people within the immediate vicinity of the incident.

Lewis stated to a detective that he brought the toy gun to the mall “for attention so he could tell people what he really wanted to say.” He advised that it “wasn’t smart to (you) but it was smart to me.” Lewis went on to say that he wanted people to know that he “was not there to hurt anyone.”

showed the Defendant one of the videos that had been posted on social media. The Defendant stated that everyone has two sides and that that was his other side. The Defendant admitted that the B.B. gun that one of the other involved black males had on his person belonged to him. A second interview was conducted with the Defendant. During the interview, the Defendant told Detective Lane that he was at the Independence Center to shoot a music video. The Defendant stated that he knew that displaying the toy gun in the crowded mall would cause alarm to the patrons. The Defendant told Detectives that when he was being taken into custody, he looked around the mall and noticed “three hundred” people looking down into the food court with several people recording the incident. A computer inquiry of the Defendant revealed no past criminal history.

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