DENVER (AP) — A former hippie pleaded guilty Tuesday to trying to detonate a bomb outside a small town Colorado police department last October, in an attempt to get back at authorities for the death of his friend in 1971.
In a wheelchair, while holding crutches, David Michael Ansberry told a federal judge that his change of plea was because of health concerns, but he did not specify further.
Court documents say that in 1971, a Nederland police officer named Renner Forbes killed Ansberry's friend, Guy Goughnor, and did not confess to the murder until 1998, 27 years later. Goughnor and Ansberry had both belonged to a hippie group called Serenity, Tranquility, and Peace, or STP, before Goughnor was killed.
The documents, released last week, say Goughnor's murder was the reason Ansberry retaliated against the Nederland police department late last year.
Forbes, who is now dead, was convicted of murdering Goughnor in 1998.
On the morning of Oct. 11, 2016, a Nederland officer found a backpack by the front door of the police building with a note that referenced Goughnor. It read, "RIP Deputy Dawg, 7-17-71," which was Goughnor's nickname and death date.
Inside the bag, the officer found a cellphone with wires connected to a battery, suspicious powder and a light bulb.
Police evacuated an adjoining grocery store and nearby businesses before robots removed parts of the device and it was finally detonated. Nobody was killed or injured, but court papers say the device was "capable of destroying the police department as well as damaging several adjoining businesses."
The 65-year-old is to be sentenced Nov. 30. He faces 30 years to life in prison.