KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — A Kansas City man has been charged with throwing two Molotov cocktails at a U.S. congressman’s office on the anniversary of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.
The U.S. attorney’s office says 28-year-old Eric King was charged Wednesday in last week’s attempted firebombing at U.S. Representative Emanuel Cleaver’s office in Kansas City.
Police said a window was broken, but that the alcohol-filled bottles failed to ignite before falling harmlessly outside the building. Paper towels that were stuffed into the necks of the bottles appear to have been lit but went out while still in the air.
The affidavit says video footage shows King throwing a hammer through Rep. Cleaver’s office window and lighting the devices. No fire damage was done to the building.
While investigating anti-government graffiti in the area of Rep. Cleaver’s office, a Kansas City, Mo. police detective reviewed surveillance footage from a nearby Bank of America. Along with detectives who were familiar with King from previous investigations, they positively identified him as a man seen while reviewing the surveillance tapes. Posts that King made on his Facebook page were also reviewed and said to incriminate him.
King was arrested on Tuesday as he was leaving his apartment. According to the affidavit he was carrying a backpack that contained red spray paint, charcoal lighter fluid and a clear plastic bottle with a tube sock placed over it. Acting on a search warrant, agents found a hand-written letter entitled “Operation House Committee” in his apartment. The letter detailed supplies and steps that aligned with what King is accused of doing.
It also specifically read: “The Missouri congress has been a willing partner in the US governments (sic) capitalist war hungry agenda.” It also listed other potential targets that included the Federal Reserve, banks and pay day loan shops.
U.S. attorney’s office spokesman Don Ledford said that he didn’t think King had an attorney.