NY Man Who Aimed to Blow Self Up on Election Day Faces Court
The New York man who built a high-powered bomb in his basement and planned to blow himself up in Washington, D.C., on Election Day last year to protest the country’s direction is expected to be sentenced Friday.
Prosecutors are pushing for 24 to 30 months in prison for Paul Rosenfeld, of the Hudson Valley. Court documents say Rosenfeld, who is in his mid 50s, wanted to draw attention to his belief in an ancient election system called “sortition,” a method of choosing political officials at random.
Officials told News 4 Rosenfeld had no criminal history but had told a reporter in Pennsylvania he planned to blow himself up on the National Mall around Election Day because he was angry about where the country was headed.
FBI agents pulled over Rosenfeld while he was driving in October, and he confessed to the plot, telling them he ordered black powder online and built a bomb in his basement.
Authorities searching his home found 8 pounds of black powder explosive meant to be used in a bomb that would ultimately weigh 200 pounds.
He had no plans to hurt anyone else, officials said. He is believed to be a lone actor not affiliated with any international terror group or ideology.
Rosenfeld was charged in federal court with unlawful manufacture of a destruction device and interstate transportation and receipt of an explosive.
“Had he been successful, Rosenfeld’s alleged plot could have claimed the lives of innocent bystanders and caused untold destruction,” said FBI Assistant Director in Charge William Sweeney.
The supervisor for the Rockland County town said in a statement at the time of his arrest that “there is no danger to the public.”