Federal judge says Brecksville bridge bomb suspects to remain behind bars, for now

CLEVELAND - The five men accused of trying to blow up the Brecksville bridge will remain behind bars.

A federal judge decided the men will remain in custody, for now, as the judge needs more time to make a ruling on bond.

During the hearing, some surveillance video was shown and more details about the bomb plot came out.

Federal prosecutors said one of the suspects was even secretly recorded saying, "We just committed the biggest act of terrorism in Cleveland since the 1960s."

Federal prosecutors also showed Judge David Dowd night vision surveillance video that allegedly showed four of the five suspects placing what they thought were real bombs at the base of the Rt. 82 bridge that links Brecksville and Sagamore Hills.

One defense attorney said that was only a snippet of the whole story.

"There are hours and hours of tape and what was presented in court by the government today was what they wanted the judge to hear and we're going to make it our business to try to get some more information," said Tony Vegh, attorney for suspect Douglas Wright.

Prosecutors said the men went to an Applebee's 25 miles north of the bridge and tried to enter cellphone codes multiple times to blow up the bridge. But the bombs were fakes and the five men were arrested outside of the restaurant.

Prosecutor Duncan Brown told the judge on Wednesday that  the suspects "knew what they were doing, wanted to do it and they thought they had done it."

Defense attorneys argued that Wright, Brandon Baxter, Anthony Hayne, Connor Stevens and Joshua Stafford were encouraged, even entrapped, by an informant that secretly recorded 40-50 hours of conversations leading up to the attempted bridge bombing.

"The evidence of entrapment really is evidence of lack of dangerousness. But for the government provocateur, in our view, they're not dangerous at all."

"Without the government provocateur, these guys could barely blow their nose, let alone blow up a bridge," said John Pyle, attorney for Baxter.

Prosecutors argued the suspects could be flight risks and should stay locked up until their September trial.

Lawyers for the suspects want them out on bond -- a decision that the judge still has to make.

"They will stay in jail until there is a ruling by the judge. The post hearing briefs are due June 8 and then the judge will rule at some point after that," explains Stevens' lawyer Jennifer Schwartz.

Judge Dowd said the suspects are entitled to view the surveillance recordings, which capture video and audio. The judge asked the prosecution to prepare entire transcripts of the tapes by June 15.

But June 8 is the day to watch as it's the day when the judge wants all final briefs filed on the issue of bond.

Print this article Back to Top

Comments

Brecksville bridge bomb plot

Failed bomb plotter Joshua Stafford appeals conviction Failed bomb plotter Joshua Stafford appeals conviction

The last of five defendants sentenced in a failed anti-Wall Street plot to bomb a highway bridge in Ohio has appealed his conviction and 10-year sentence.

Man guilty in northeast Ohio bridge bomb plot, Joshua Stafford, sentenced to 10 years in jail Man guilty in northeast Ohio bridge bomb plot, Joshua Stafford, sentenced to 10 years in jail

One of the five men found guilty for their roles in a conspiracy to destroy a northeast Ohio bridge received his sentence Monday.

Sentencing set for fifth bomb plot defendant Joshua Stafford Sentencing set for fifth bomb plot defendant Joshua Stafford

The last of five defendants in a failed anti-Wall Street plot to bomb a highway bridge near Cleveland faces sentencing after losing another bid for leniency.

VIDEO: Men in Brecksville bomb plot place dud explosives at Brecksville-Northfield High Level Bridge VIDEO: Men in Brecksville bomb plot place dud explosives at Brecksville-Northfield High Level Bridge

Video released on Friday shows a group of men attempting to blow up the Brecksville-Northfield High Level Bridge last year.

Brecksville bridge bomb plot suspect Joshua Stafford found guilty on three counts Brecksville bridge bomb plot suspect Joshua Stafford found guilty on three counts

The fifth suspect in the Brecksville bomb plot was found guilty on two counts of using weapons of mass destruction and one count of explosions materials.

Final defendant, Joshua Stafford, testifies at Brecksville bridge bomb plot trial Final defendant, Joshua Stafford, testifies at Brecksville bridge bomb plot trial

The last of five suspects in a failed Ohio plot to bomb a highway bridge has taken the stand in his defense.

Prosecutor: Brecksville suspect planned to use to detonate bomb Prosecutor: Brecksville suspect planned to use to detonate bomb

A prosecutor says an Ohio bridge bomb-plotting suspect planned to use a phone to detonate what he thought were real explosives.

Jury selected for trial of bridge bomb plot suspect Joshua Stafford Jury selected for trial of bridge bomb plot suspect Joshua Stafford

The jury has been chosen in the case of Joshua Stafford, the last of five bridge bomb-plotting suspects, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.

Bridge bomb plot suspect Joshua Stafford to represent self at trial Bridge bomb plot suspect Joshua Stafford to represent self at trial

The last of five bridge bomb-plotting suspects in northeast Ohio is headed to trial and the defendant will represent himself.

Brecksville bomb suspect allowed to represent himself Brecksville bomb suspect allowed to represent himself

A federal judge will allow the last of five bridge bomb-plotting suspects in northeast Ohio to represent himself at trial.