Ohio Man Admits Crashing through Security Gate at FBI-Pittsburgh Headquarters
PITTSBURGH - An Ohio resident pleaded guilty in federal court to a charge of willfully injuring or committing depredation against any property of the United States, United States Attorney Scott W. Brady announced today.
Thomas Ross, age 49, formerly of New Waterford, Ohio, pleaded guilty to one count before Chief United States District Judge Joy Flowers Conti.
In connection with the guilty plea, the court was advised that on July 26, 2016, Ross drove his vehicle, a large dump truck, through the gate of the FBI Pittsburgh Field Office, located at 3311 East Carson Street, in Pittsburgh. Ross proceeded to ram through the security barriers at a high rate of speed, inflicting extensive damage on the gate and security barriers and causing the vehicle to become airborne. Upon hitting the ground, the vehicle struck a nearby light post in the interior parking lot of the FBI Pittsburgh.
The court was advised that the total amount of loss attributable to Ross’s actions will be determined at sentencing. The government estimates that the cost to repair and replace the gate and security barriers struck by Ross’s vehicle was approximately $175,000, and that the cost to repair the light post was approximately $13,684. The government also advised the court that, while the gate and security barriers were being repaired, the FBI also hired additional security personnel at additional cost to the FBI.
Judge Conti scheduled sentencing for June 13, 2018. The law provides for a maximum total sentence of 10 years in prison, a fine of $250,000, or both. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the actual sentence imposed is based upon the seriousness of the offense and the prior criminal history, if any, of the defendant.
Assistant United States Attorney Adam N. Hallowell is prosecuting this case on behalf of the government.
The Pittsburgh FBI and Pittsburgh Bureau of Police conducted the investigation that led to the prosecution of Thomas Ross.