Man arrested in plot to blow up 48 churches in Oklahoma
Miami, Oklahoma — Authorities in Oklahoma have arrested and charged a 23-year-old man who they say planned to blow up 48 area churches.
Gregory Arthur Weiler II was arrested last week at a motel in Miami, Oklahoma, according to Ben Loring, first assistant district attorney for Ottawa County.
Authorities were tipped off to the plot by workers at the motel about 90 miles northeast of Tulsa. One discovered a duffel bag full of Molotov cocktails near the outside trash, while a room service employee reported suspicious items in Weiler's room, said Loring.
Police searched the room and allegedly found various documents outlining his plan to set off bombs at 48 churches in and around Miami.
Among the documents were a list of churches, a hand-drawn map with the churches grouped and circled, instructions for making Molotov cocktails and a handwritten journal, said Loring. Some of the documents had been torn up and needed to be assembled.
Loring said one of the journal entries read as follows: "Self-Promote for the next 4 years while beginning list of goals written out in Oklahoma having to do with destroying and removing church buildings from U.S., a tiny bit at a time -- setting foundation for the years to follow."
Authorities also recovered 50 brown glass bottles with cloth wicks attached by duct tape, a funnel and a 5-gallon gasoline can, Loring said.
Weiler was charged Friday with threatening to use an explosive or incendiary device and violating the Oklahoma Anti-Terrorism Act. He is being held without bond.
Weiler appeared in court Monday and was appointed representation -- attorneys Andrew Meloy and Daniel Giraldi, said Loring. Both work at the Hartley Law Firm. A woman answering the phone there said that the office would have no comment.
The suspect, who is from Illinois, is expected to appear in court next on October 22.