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Florida Neo-Nazi Arrested After Explosives Found at Murder Scene

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Devon Arthurs, 18, arrested in the shooting deaths of his two roommates, said they were neo-Nazis who mocked his conversion from the same ideology to Islam. (Tampa Police Department, via AP)

By    |   Thursday, 25 May 2017 11:37 AM

A Florida neo-Nazi was arrested on charges related to explosives materials found at the Tampa Palms apartment where two of his roommates were allegedly murdered by another roommate.

Brandon Russell, a Florida National Guardsman, "who kept a framed photo of Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVeigh on his dresser," was crying outside of the apartment when police arrived to investigate the double homicide Friday, the Tampa Bay Times reported.

Devon Arthurs, 18, is accused of shooting 22-year-old Jeremy Himmelman and 18-year-old Andrew Oneschuk on Friday at the apartment where the four men lived, according to the Tampa Bay Times.

Arthurs reportedly shared white supremacist views before he converted to Islam, and "had become angry about the world's anti-Muslim sentiment," the newspaper reported.

Arthurs gave another reason as to why he shot his roommates, telling police that "he wanted to prevent them from committing planned acts of domestic terrorism," according to Assistant State Attorney Ronald Gale, the HuffPost reported, adding that Arthurs told police that his three roommates were neo-Nazis.

Police found "cake-like" explosive material -- HMTD, or hexamethylene tiperoxide diamine -- among other explosive materials at the apartment. According to a criminal complaint filed in U.S. District Court, the HMTD and other explosives belonged to Russell.

"[Police] allege that among the chemicals located was 'more than a pound of ammonium nitrate,'" Ian J. Goldstein, Russell's attorney, told the HuffPost on Wednesday. "According to experts I've consulted with, this is a relatively minuscule amount of ammonium nitrate."

Russell, who reportedly admitted to his neo-Nazi beliefs, said that he used HMTD to boost homemade rockets and launch balloons into the atmosphere.

In an interview with the HuffPost, Rick Lind, an associate professor at the University of Florida's department of mechanical and aerospace engineering, and Jim Redyke, a demolitions expert at Dykon Demolition in Oklahoma, said the explosives found in the garage were unlikely to be used as rockets.

"I don't think they would be a logical choice because there are much safer compounds," Lind said. "I don't know why you would choose to use those. It seems doubtful."

Himmelman's sister Lyssa disputed claims that her brother was a neo-Nazi, saying that he and Oneschuk planned to move out of the apartment, the Tampa Bay Times reported.

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A Florida neo-Nazi was arrested on charges related to explosives materials found at the Tampa Palms apartment where two of his roommates were allegedly murdered by another roommate.
florida, neo-nazi, arrested, explosives, murder
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2017-37-25
Thursday, 25 May 2017 11:37 AM
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