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Cops: University of Maryland student vowed rampage would 'make it to national news'

Updated at 2:50 p.m. ET: COLLEGE PARK, Md. -- A University of Maryland student has been arrested and charged with posting an Internet threat claiming he planned to go on a shooting rampage on campus hoping to kill as many people as possible.

Campus police said in a statement that 19-year-old Alexander Song, of Fulton, Md., had been identified as the person who posted plans on a website for a rampage.

"I will be on a shooting rampage tomorrow on campus," police quoted Song as saying in the Saturday posting. "Hopefully I kill enough people to make it to national news." 

The message also warned people to "stay away from the mall." Police did not elaborate.

Capt. Marc Limansky told the Baltimore Sun that police were informed of the alleged threats after a former student noticed them on Two people also contacted the university after chatting with Song on, Limansky added.

A sophmore honors student, Song was taken to a hospital for a psychiatric evaluation after his arrest Sunday.

Song, who was not armed when he was arrested, faces a misdemeanor charge of disturbing school activities.

A police spokesman said it was unclear if Song had an attorney.

The university website describes Song as a member of a campus research program for select honors students who explore how science and technology relates with society. The Gemstone Program lists Song as scheduled to graduate in 2014.

Song was one of the leaders of a student research team, Be Pure, that was studying ways to make methane gas safe for energy consumption, said James Wallace, a mechanical engineering professor and director of the Gemstone Program.

Steven Hutcheson, the team's advisor, said Song had once been one of the more vocal members of the team but had recently appeared quieter. Hutcheson and a couple students who knew Song said there was no indication that he was unhappy or capable of violence.

"I wish there had been something because I would have loved to have helped him," Hutcheson said.

Anjana Sekaran, another member of the Be Pure team, said she had known Song since last year, "and he is a very intelligent, good-natured individual. He would never hurt anyone."

After the arrest, some students complained on Twitter that the school's emergency alert system was not activated after police learned of the threat. University President Wallace Loh said in a statement Monday that officials decided that sending out a campus-wide alert before Song was in custody threatened to interfere with their investigation.

"The police are confident that any threat to our community was mitigated once the student was taken into custody," Loh said.

The Associated Press and Reuters contributed to this report.

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