Evidence in Planned Parenthood attack

A federal court released messages from someone using the name 'AtariWilliams' discussing attacks months before a Delaware clinic was firebombed.

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Evidence in Planned Parenthood attack

A couple of weeks ago, I was disappointed to discover that no journalists had been in the courtroom for Samuel James Gulick’s detention hearing in a federal court in Delaware.

The 18-year-old was arrested in January on suspicion of firebombing a Planned Parenthood clinic in Newark, Delaware, and there’s been some evidence that he may have been part of the white nationalist “groyper” movement that has sort of taken the place of the “alt-right” in time for 2020.

My hope was that we’d find out more about Gulick’s ideological leanings in the February 10 detention hearing.

Well, on Thursday, we got the next best thing. The court made a few exhibits public that were used during the detention hearing, including at least one text message from September that mentions attacking Planned Parenthood clinics.

Unfortunately, a lot of context is missing. For example, the exhibits don’t make it clear who was sending or receiving the messages. They only show the content. And even then, some of the photocopies of the exhibits are so distorted as to make the messages unintelligible.

But here’s what is clear: Federal investigators are in possession of messages sent under the username “AtariWilliams” that discuss the idea of firebombing Planned Parenthood clinics.

In one message, the author wrote: “I was thinking of making fliers in the style of american wwii propaganda, that says at the top in bold white letters ‘Do your part in toppling the altars of Moloch’ then at the bottom ‘Firebomb your local Planned Parenthood TODAY.’”

In a subsequent message, the author wrote: “And on the back it says ‘90% of arson cases are unsolved’ with the locations of all the local planned parenthood abortion mills.”

In other messages, “AtariWilliams” wrote about “being caught.”

“Caught, not caught, whatever,” one message said. “As long as they burn.”

Again, it’s not clear from the documents who sent the messages, but I assume that would have been stated during the detention hearing.

As I said on Twitter earlier this month: Give me a staff and a real budget, and this is the kind of thing we'd cover relentlessly. For now, you get me digging through court records and finding what I can.

At the hearing, by the way, the federal judge handling the case ordered Gulick to be held behind bars pending his trial.

READ the exhibits released by the federal court (DocumentCloud).

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