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George E. B. Holding

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

WILMINGTON MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO DETONATING BOMB
and POSSESSION OF ILLEGAL FIREARMS

GREENVILLE - United States Attorney George E. B. Holding announced that JOSHUA CHRISTIAN HOYT, 25, of Wilmington, North Carolina pled guilty in federal court in Greenville on Monday, March 12, 2007 to one count of maliciously damaging property by means of fire and explosive in violation of Title 18, United States code, Section 844(i), one count of manufacturing a destructive device in violation of Title 26, United States Code, Section 5681(f), and two counts of manufacturing illegal firearms in violation of Title 26, United States Code, Section 5681(f).

The investigation showed that HOYT, who lived at an apartment complex in Wilmington, devised a plan to detonate a bomb just outside his neighbor’s apartment with the intent of killing his neighbors and then to lie in wait just outside the apartment building and shoot innocent bystanders as they fled the building after the bomb exploded. To this end, during the weeks leading up to June 18, 2005, HOYT built a bomb (using gunpowder, gasoline, shrapnel, and items he obtained over the Internet), purchased a shotgun and rifle, which he illegally altered by sawing off the barrels of each firearm, and then stockpiled ammunition for these firearms. On June 18, 2005, HOYT ignited the bomb outside his neighbor’s apartment, as planned, but when the bomb failed to cause as much damage as HOYT had intended, HOYT abandoned his plan and fled Wilmington with his sawed off rifle and shotgun and his stockpile of ammunition.

The investigation showed that HOYT maintained an internet website known as “www.bedead.com” which was a repository of photographs of victims of violent death, to which HOYT added captions. The website also provided instructions and links to internet sites showing how to construct pipebombs, make homemade napalm, sawed-off shotguns and rifles, and the best procedure to use in killing oneself.

Investigation of the case was conducted by Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation, Wilmington Police Department, and Wilmington Fire Department. Assistant U. S. Attorney Dennis M. Duffy is handling the case for the Government.

 

News releases are available on the U. S. Attorney’s web page at www.usdoj.gov/usao/nce within 48 hours of release.

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