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Ex-senior airman charged in Okla. Air Force recruitment center blast

BIXBY, Okla. -- A former U.S. Air Force senior airman is facing federal charges for his alleged involvement in a pipe bomb explosion at a recruitment center Monday night in Bixby, Oklahoma.

On Wednesday, Attorney Loretta F. Radford charged 28-year-old Benjamin Don Roden of Tulsa with malicious damage to federal property by use of explosive, use of explosive to commit federal felony and two counts of destruction of federal property. Radford told CBS News she believes Roden's motive was "pure hatred against the military."

Roden was a decorated senior airman in the U.S. Air Force, where he worked as a firefighter at the Oklahoma Air National Guard. He received three awards for operations dealing with the global war on terrorism and a national defense service medal, according to Oklahoma Air National Guard Capt. Jennifer Proctor.

Roden was discharged from the Air Force in April.

Air Force recruiting center in Bixby, Oklahoma, outside Yulsa, is seen after the explosion on July 10, 2017. KOTV

Court documents show the former airman wanted to become a U.S. Marine, but was rejected and ultimately blamed the Air Force. His last commanding officer, Sgt. Brian Curtis, said Roden "hated the military" and "received disciplinary actions for his conduct." He said he believes Roden is "smart and capable of constructing electronic devices." 

A search warrant served at Roden's home, along with his parent's residence, recovered materials associated with manufacturing explosive devices and a bag that contained two pipe bombs. 

"We do not believe he should be released to the community, mainly because of his ability to create pipe bombs," Radford said. 

At this time, the FBI does not believe the incident was an act of domestic terrorism. 

Roden is being held at Tulsa County Jail. He is expected to appear in court on Friday. 

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