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Gay Bar Bomber Complains About Prison Treatment


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Gay Bar Bomber Complains About Prison Treatment

by 365Gay.com Newscenter Staff

Posted: December 11, 2006 12:01 am ET

(Florence, Colorado) Serial bomber Eric Rudolph - the man responsible for the 1997 bombing of an Atlanta gay bar and three other blasts including the 1996 bombing at the Atlanta Olympics - says his treatment in the Supermax federal prison in Colorado is designed to drive him insane.

In a series of letters to the Colorado Springs Gazette Rudolph says that he is kept in a 7-by-12-foot cell for 23 hours a day.

The Gazette published extracts from several of the letters on the weekend.

"It is a closed-off world designed to isolate inmates from social and environmental stimuli, with the ultimate purpose of causing mental illness and chronic physical conditions such as diabetes, heart disease and arthritis," he said in one letter.

"Using solitary confinement, Supermax is designed to inflict as much misery and pain as is constitutionally permissible," he wrote.

In August 2005, Rudolph was sentenced to life in prison without parole for the bombing spree.

Four people were injured when a pipe bomb went off near the doorway of Otherside Lounge, an Atlanta lesbian bar, in February 21, 1997. The bombing occurred about 9:30 pm, just as the club was beginning to fill up.

After patrons were evacuated from the club, investigators discovered and detonated a second bomb that had been hung in shrubs overlooking the parking lot.

A week earlier a bomb exploded in suburban Atlanta at the Northside Family Planning Clinic in Sandy Springs.

The bomb, on the back porch of the building, caused minor damage to an examination room at the clinic. The bomb went off before the clinic opened for the day, but about 90 minutes later, at 10:37 a.m., as the parking lot of the building filled with investigators, a second bomb, buried in a flower bed at the front of the parking lot, exploded.

A car that had been moved from the rear of the building after the first blast took the brunt of the second explosion. Seven people were injured.

But, Rudolph's most serious bombing was at the Atlanta Olympics in 1996.

At 1:25 a.m., a nail bomb exploded in Olympic Park, sending nails and screws flying through the air for more than 100 yards.

Nearly 100,000 late-night revelers had gathered at the 21-acre central square to celebrate the middle weekend of the Olympics. Alice Hawthorne, 44, of Albany, died of head injuries from flying shrapnel. Turkish television cameraman Melih Uzunyol died of a heart attack while running to cover the explosion. More than 100 people were injured, including Hawthorne's 14-year-old daughter.

Rudolph became a suspect following the 1998 bombing of an abortion clinic in Birmingham Alabama after he truck was spotted leaving the scene. An off duty police officer died in the attack.

After Rudolph was identified by authorities the white supremist went into hiding.

He was captured by police in North Carolina in June 2003.

©365Gay.com 2006


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