The Thomas Moore Society is chastising the police department of Kalispell, Montana for not "taking seriously" what the anti-abortion group is declaring a "vicious" attack on a pro-life protester performing a 40 Days for Life Prayer Vigil in front of a local reproductive health clinic.
Organizers say the campaign is supposed to be a peaceful one, but on Thursday night at around 6:15, a homemade incendiary device was thrown at an elderly woman participating in the prayer on North Meridian Drive.
Mary Anne Hofmann says she heard an explosion behind her and turned around to discover a water bottle, that was on fire. No one was injured from the explosion and no one saw who threw the bomb or where it came from.
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Witnesses don't believe the incident was taken seriously by authorities, claiming that no evidence was taken from the scene. Some believe the bomb was meant to intimidate them, but say it's not going to scare them away from their cause.
But the clinic was not the only place to have a home made bombing attempt that day. According to Daily Interlake News:
Law enforcement officials are investigating two homemade explosive devices that were apparently thrown from a vehicle Thursday at two Kalispell locations, including one aimed at a pro-life prayer vigil.
No one was injured, though the devices — made up of an unknown chemical, a plastic bottle and aluminum foil — did explode.
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According to the Kalispell Police Department, the first device was reported by an off-duty officer in front of a department store at Mountain View Plaza at 6:05 p.m. and the second was along Meridian Road at 6:17 p.m.
Kalispell Police Department Lt. Wade Rademacher said detectives still are investigating the reports, but the timing and proximity of the devices appear to point to a sole perpetrator.
“It was the same type of bottle and appeared to have the same types of components,” Rademacher said.
The timing of the incident outside of the clinic, which was only ten minutes from that of the initial explosion, would suggest the possibility of a crime of convenience versus an attempt to solely terrorize and harm an anti-choice protester, but police will be continuing to investigate and will likely learn more once the bomber is caught.
Either way, we hope that all of the potential violence in Kalispell is over and the perpetrator is caught quickly.