The recession affects everyone differently. Unpaid bills make people nervous. But when former Philadelphia policeman Vincent Gaudini got a $3,000 invoice from his son’s school, Harcum College, for dorm fees, he responded with threats, really weird threats:

Rather than pay, the elder Gaudini, 55, allegedly fired off an e-mail to Harcum’s dean of student life “respectfully requesting that you present Michael with a zero balance for his short stay at your facility” in exchange for silence about drugs and guns on campus.

“As I am sure your [sic] aware, illegal firearms are a major concern for the Philadelphia District Attorney,” the e-mail said, “not to mention that rampant drug use on your campus.”

Gaudini’s efforts to intimidate the school were apparently ineffective. He was arraigned Wednesday, with bail set at $5,000. He faces counts of extortion and attempted theft.

Oddly, Vincent Gaudini is also a graduate of Harcum College.

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Daniel Luzer is the news editor at Governing Magazine and former web editor of the Washington Monthly. Find him on Twitter: @Daniel_Luzer