Richard Holzer, a self-avowed neo-Nazi and white supremacist, has been sentenced to 19 and 1/2 years in prison and 15 years of supervised release for attempting to bomb Jewish community landmarks in Pueblo, Colorado.
“Mr. Holzer targeted a place of worship for violence and destruction to drive people of the Jewish faith from our community,” FBI Denver Special Agent in Charge Michael Schneider said in a statement. “Today’s sentence demonstrates the commitment by the FBI and our law enforcement partners to ensure that if a crime is motivated by bias against a religion or any other federally protected status, it will be aggressively investigated, and the perpetrators held responsible for their actions.”
In federal court, Holzer pled guilty to federal hate crime and explosives charges, as well as “intentionally attempting to obstruct persons in the enjoyment of their free exercise of religious beliefs, through force and the attempted use of explosives and fire,” the Justice Department’s press statement read. His crime was considered an attempted act of domestic terrorism.
Holzer bought fake explosives from an FBI informant, intending to use the bomb material to blow up Temple Emanuel, a Jewish community center in Colorado and historical landmark. Holzer showed the FBI informant his copy of Hitler’s writings and admitted he hoped to kill Jewish members of the neighborhood.
His social media presence showed a man obsessed with hating others, and amassing deadly weapons.
“Today’s sentence is another step forward in our on-going fight against extremism,” said U.S. Attorney Jason Dunn of the District of Colorado. “About two-and-a-half years ago, my first day as U.S. Attorney took me to a vigil for victims from the Pittsburgh Tree of Life Synagogue attack. Today, my last day in the office, we have sentenced the extremist responsible for the attempted bombing of the Temple Emanuel Synagogue in Pueblo. We must remain ever vigilant in this battle and I am confident the Department will continue to lead this fight.”