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Man arrested for bomb threat in Spokane charged with arson

by NICHOLAS K. GERANIOS Associated Press
| December 10, 2020 2:50 PM

SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — Police on Thursday identified the man who threatened to blow up the office of the Spokane County Democrats as a 45-year-old man from Grand Coulee, Washington, who authorities say was upset at the whole government system.

Peter Yeager, 45, did not actually have a bomb inside a backpack he carried into the office on Wednesday, police said. But the Iraq War veteran was charged with first-degree arson for starting a fire in the building.

It wasn't immediately clear if Yeager had an attorney.

Yeager told police he doesn't support any political party and was not targeting Democrats, Spokane police said in a statement. Rather he was mad at the entire government system and the “elites” within, police said.

Yeager, who is in the Spokane County jail, also told police he acted alone and was not involved in any radical groups.

He used Google to find a political office, and the office of the Democrats was closest to his location, police said. He told police he assumed the Republican office was in Idaho.

Yeager told investigators he hoped to burn down the building, located on a busy commercial street, but not to hurt anyone.

Yeager also brought a handwritten copy of a manifesto into the building, police said. Yeager told detectives he suffers from PTSD.

A backpack with visible wires that Yeager wore into the office was not a bomb, but contained gasoline and oil he used to start a small fire, police said.