(CNBNewsnet)(GLOUCESTER CITY, NJ)(Sept. 9, 2020)---The bombing incident at the GCity CrossFit gym in Gloucester City on August 26 is being investigated as a hate crime according to the website Out In Jersey.
Dwayne A. Vandergrift of the 700 unit block of Powell Street, was arrested and charged with planting and detonating a bomb on the front door of the gym, 512-514 South Broadway. The gym is owned by Jenai Gonzales and her wife Ann Panarello.
The gym prominently displayed a large gay-pride flag on the front window near the entrance of the building. The front door was blown apart. It is not known if the building suffered any structural damage or if there was any damage to the inside of the gym.
The gym was considered a safe space for LGBT people.
Steve Vitale, owner of Lifting Culture. said the gym is “A known safe-haven in the area for LGBTQ youth. The owners themselves, many members, and several coaches are also gay. Yet, this facility is also home to people of all ages, ethnicities, and gender identities”, reported the Shore News Network.
Prosecutors said there is security camera footage of Vandergrift fleeing the scene before the bombing.
No one was injured in the blast.
Vandergrift reportedly told his mother he intended to commit suicide by cop. Agents discovered 85 marijuana plants at Vandergrift's home, in the 700 unit block of Powell Street, in what is described as a grow operation according to the FBI. When authorities searched his home they reportedly found two more explosive devices and an illegal short-barreled rifle. There is no known motive for the attack at this time said the FBI.
published Gloucestercitynews.net | SEPT 8, 2020