UMaine cancels baseball games over social media threat

Rob Wolfe, Portland Press Herald, Maine
·2 min read

Apr. 18—The University of Maine canceled a baseball doubleheader Sunday as police asked for help locating a 20-year-old Manchester, New Hampshire, man in connection with a social media threat he allegedly made to campus.

The university did not specify what threat the man, Afshin Zarechian, had made. But it asked people on campus to look out for Zarechian, who is about 5 feet 9 inches tall and weighs 150 pounds, with dark hair, eyes and complexion.

Zarechian drives an older-model green BMW with the New Hampshire license plate RICCH. University of Maine police asked anyone who sees him or his vehicle to call 207-581-4040.

Local, state and federal law enforcement agencies are attempting to locate Zarechian, according to the university. The Orono campus is not in lockdown, and officials have "no indication" that he's in the area, they said, but they're taking precautions should he arrive.

"The University of Maine campus is not in lockdown," UMaine officials said in a statement Sunday. "Out of an absolute abundance of caution, there are extra police patrols in the area, and community members are reminded to remain vigilant and aware of their surroundings. If you see something, please say something."

UMaine and the University of Hartford baseball teams first delayed and then agreed to cancel their Sunday doubleheader "out of an abundance of caution," the Black Bears said.

The university first notified the public about the threat Saturday night, and as of 2 p.m. Sunday officials were still attempting to locate Zarechian.

A spokeswoman for the University of Maine declined to provide more details about the nature of the alleged threat Sunday afternoon.

"This is a multiple agency investigation and all the information available has been posted. We'll provide updates when we can," said Margaret Nagle, senior director of public relations for the university.

Local, state, federal law enforcement attempting to locate Afshin Zarechian, 20, related to social media threat. No indication he is in area. UMaine not in lockdown. Out of abundance of caution, extra police patrols in the area. As always, be mindful of surroundings. 207-581-4040

— University of Maine (@UMaine) April 18, 2021