Texas man tries to plant bomb on Confederate statue, officials say

Aug 23, 2017, 00:42
Texas man tries to plant bomb on Confederate statue, officials say

A Houston man was busted for plotting to blow up the statue of Confederate officer Richard Dowling in that city's Hermann Park, the feds said Monday.

According to an Federal Bureau of Investigation affidavit, Schneck was spotted just after 11 p.m. Saturday kneeling in front of the General Dowling Monument, a marble statue honoring Richard Dowling, who served as a military leader and then a recruiter for the Confederacy. Schneck was allegedly holding two small boxes that appeared to have duct tape and wires on them.

He pleaded guilty in August 2014 to federal charges of storing picric acid, an explosive also used in medicine and dyes, at a Houston home.

HMTD is peroxide that is commonly used by suicide bombers and terrorists as a powerful explosive, according to the American Chemical Society.

A criminal complaint revealed more details about the park ranger's encounter with Schneck.

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KHOU 11 Investigates discovered 25-year-old Andrew Cecil Schneck was released from probation in the earlier case last year, after serving less than half of his probation sentence. Officials also said he conducts "chemistry experiments" there. "We just know that there is some significant hazardous materials within the objective", said Larry Satterwhite, the assistant chief of the Houston Police Department.

The Houston Police Department, the FBI, the Houston Fire Department Hazmat Unit and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives on Sunday began an operation at Schneck's home after a traffic stop.

A Houston police bomb squad said that a timer, wires connected to a homemade detonator, battery and the hexamethylene triperoxide diamine found on Schneck "were capable to produce a viable explosive device". The motion said early termination was warranted because Schneck had "devoted himself to his education and was awarded a Bachelor of Arts from Austin College" and had "matured and his focus is no longer concentrated on high-risk activities". In 2016, a judge released him from probation ahead of schedule.

Schneck was arrested Saturday night and made his first court appearance Monday.

The scribd.com tags for the document include: "Explosive Material", "Chemical Reactions", "Nitrogen", "Molecules", and "Alkene". If convicted, Schneck now faces up to 40 years in federal prison and a $250,000 fine.

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