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Oakland Man Convicted Of Targeting Law Enforcement Officers With Mail Bombs; Revenge Was Motive

SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) -- A federal jury has convicted Ross Gordon Laverty of multiple felonies in connection with mailing two explosive devices to homes in Alameda and East Palo Alto, targeting law enforcement officers with the intent to injure or kill his targets.

U.S. Attorney David Anderson and U.S. Postal Inspection Service Inspector in Charge Rafael Nuñez announced the verdict on Wednesday afternoon. Evidence presented at the trial revealed Laverty's motive was revenge on law enforcement officers.

"A federal jury convicted Ross Laverty of mailing two bombs through United States Post Office to homes in East Palo Alto and Alameda," Anderson said in a release. "In addition to his intended victims, Laverty put others, including postal workers and mail carriers in grave danger. The guilty verdicts are a reminder that law enforcement will investigate unlawful use of the mail, whether for the violent ends Laverty sought, or other illegal purposes."

Ross Gordon Laverty
Ross Gordon Laverty (U.S. Department of Justice)

The evidence at trial established that on or about October 9, 2017, Laverty mailed an improvised explosive device to an address in East Palo Alto that the victim opened on October 19.

The victim carried the package outside of his home and opened it in his back yard, causing it to detonate, inflicting injuries to him, and blasting a hole through a wood frame and fence.

Further, the evidence at trial established that on or about November 24, 2017, Laverty mailed an identical explosive device to an address on Bay Farm in Alameda.

The intended victim's wife opened the package inside of her home, causing it to explode.

Federal prosecutors presented evidence that Laverty sought revenge against a corrections officer sharing the same name as the East Palo Alto victim who had strip-searched Laverty while he was incarcerated at San Mateo County jail in April of 2014.

The evidence also demonstrated Laverty sought revenge against an Alameda Police Department Officer involved in the probation search of his residence and his arrest in October of 2013.

On May 21, 2019, a federal grand jury handed down an indictment charging Laverty with two counts of mailing an explosive device with the intent to injure or kill; two counts of possession of an unregistered firearm and two counts of using an explosive during the commission of a felony.

The jury found Laverty guilty on all counts.

Laverty faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 20 years' imprisonment, maximum fines of $10,000 to $250,000 per count, a term of supervised release, and restitution.


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