Don’t underestimate danger of suspect

I am writing in response to the Feb. 11 article entitled “Bomb suspect likely to receive bail,” the federal Public Defender’s Association attorney, Chris Brown, argued that the actions of the suspect, Vladislav Miftakhov, in making bombs in his Altoona apartment, was “no different than many young men as they approach adulthood.”

Brown further asserted, “This is what boys do.”

Don’t be fooled by this pronouncement, even though this individual has been educated in law. In fact, the audacity of this attorney to even suggest that most boys grow up making bombs is preposterous and defies common sense.

Bomb making is associated with targeted violence. And what we know about targeted violence is that, according to the Secret Service, there is a four-stage path to violence (Don Shomette, 2014) as outlined below:

1. An idea exists that violence is a reasonable means for meeting an agenda or need.

2. A plan is developed to complete the act of violence.

3. The individual prepares to complete the act by physically gathering the necessary items.

4. The individual acts by completing the violence.

Experts in law enforcement are all too familiar with how to proceed with compiling information to determine to what degree this individual posed a threat.

In advocating that he not be released on bail, prosecutors are assuring the public that saving lives is their priority as they continue to examine and substantiate the methodical and public process this person was taking on his path to violence.

Molly J. Stroup

Licensed Social Worker