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Man pleads not guilty in pipe bomb attack on Massachusetts’ Satanic Temple

BOSTON (AP) — An Oklahoma man accused of throwing a pipe bomb at the headquarters of a group called The Satanic Temple in Massachusetts pleaded not guilty Thursday during his arraignment in federal court in Boston.

Sean Patrick Palmer of Perkins, Oklahoma, has been charged with using an explosive to damage a building following an April attack on the company’s headquarters, which is also used as an art gallery.

The Salem-based group says on its website that it campaigns for secularism and individual freedoms and that its members do not actually worship Satan.

Palmer is due back in court on July 30 and agreed to remain in custody. If found guilty, he could face 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.

The Satanic Temple says on its website that it does not believe in the existence of Satan or the supernatural.

An attorney representing Palmer did not immediately respond to an email seeking comment.

Investigators said surveillance cameras showed a man walking toward the building shortly after 4 a.m. April 8, wearing a face covering, a tactical vest and gloves. The man then lit an improvised explosive device, threw it at the main entrance and ran away. The bomb partially exploded, causing minor fire damage, authorities said.

The bomb appeared to be made from a piece of plastic pipe, authorities said, and they were able to obtain a DNA sample from a single hair on the bomb.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office said investigators found a six-page note addressed to “Dear Satanist” in a flowerbed near the attack, urging conversion. Authorities said Palmer posted similar comments on social media.

Prosecutors also said surveillance footage showed a black Volvo registered to Palmer driving erratically in the area before and after the incident.

The Associated Press

Rogers Radio News

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