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Suspected Synagogue Bomber Indicted by Federal Grand Jury  

By Lookout Staff

May 4, 2011 -- Ron Hirsch, suspected of setting an explosive device that hurtled 250 pounds of concrete through the roof of a residence next door to a midtown synagogue, was indicted by a federal grand jury in Los Angeles Tuesday.

The 60-year-old homeless man was charged with four felony explosive charges. If convicted, Hirsch may face up to 70 years in prison, according to authorities. He is scheduled to be arraigned on May 23.

The device Hirsch is suspected of setting blew up next to the Chabad House on 17th Street near Broadway on April 7. No one was hurt by the explosion.

Hirsch left Santa Monica by bus the same day. Authorities speculated that he planned to travel to New York, where he has relatives.

After leading federal authorities on a chase halfway across the country, Hirsch was arrested in Cleveland, Ohio on April 12. He was identified by a rabbi there, after he allegedly asked for a place to stay.

Santa Monica Police linked the materials used to construct the device to Hirsch, a transient “known to frequent synagogues and Jewish community centers seeking charity.”

Authorities said that no motive for the attack is known.

Hirsch was the subject of a joint investigation by the Santa Monica Police Department, the FBI, the ATF, the Los Angeles Police Department, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department and the Santa Monica Fire Department.


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