Mark W. Sweeney, age 60, of Syracuse, appeared today in U.S. District Court on charges that he threated to kill employees of the Syracuse Veterans Affairs Hospital, announced United States Attorney Grant C. Jaquith and Chief Thomas Martin, Department of Veterans Affairs Police, Syracuse.

The charge in the complaint filed against Sweeney carries a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison, a fine of up to $250,000, and a term of supervised release of up to 3 years. A defendant’s sentence is imposed by a judge based on the particular statute the defendant is charged with violating, the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines, and other factors.

According to the Complaint, Sweeney called into a Veterans Crisis Line and made several threatening statements directed toward VA hospital staff, including that he intended to kill multiple people, and had a plan and the means to do so.

The charges in the complaint are merely accusations. The defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

This case is being investigated by the Veterans Affairs Police Department and is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael D. Gadarian.