Portland man pleads guilty to threatening boy on Idaho bus

James E. Brennan, 45, pleaded guilty Wednesday to malicious harassment for an incident where he threatened to kill a 6-year-old boy on a Greyhound bus traveling on Interstate 84 on New Year’s Day.

Witnesses told police that Brennan got on the westbound bus at Twin Falls and started drinking beer. He later began yelling racial insults and threatened violence against several passengers, including the boy, police said.

The bus driver became so concerned for the safety of the passengers, he pulled the bus over to remove Brennan from the bus at the Stage Stop exit at Milepost 71 east of Boise.

Brennan threatened to kill the driver and three adult passengers — using a shotgun, pistol or ax —and then shoved the driver, Ada County deputies said.

A deputy and an Idaho State Police trooper arrived at the scene at the Stage Stop truck stop shortly after police dispatchers received a call at 7:15 p.m. on January 1. They took Brennan into custody.

The officers did not find any weapons among Brennan's belongings.

It was unclear how much beer Brennan consumed during the 107 miles he was on the bus between Twin Falls and the Stage Stop. However, police found eight empty beer cans on the bus.

Brennan has remained at the Ada County Jail in Boise since his arrest. Bond was set at $50,000.

A battery charge, along with three counts of disturbing the peace, were dismissed as part of Brennan’s agreement to plead guilty on the harassment charge.

He faces up to five years in prison when he’s sentenced June 24.