Man charged in Michigan pipe bomb case ordered jailed

September 24, 2021 GMT

BAY CITY, Mich. (AP) — A 75-year-old northern Michigan man accused of placing pipe bombs outside two phone stores was ordered jailed Friday until his trial.

John D. Allen of Whittemore waived his right to a detention hearing in Bay City, reported. U.S. District Court Magistrate Judge Patricia T. Morris asked Allen if he consented to not having the hearing. He replied: “Maybe at a later date, if that would be possible.”

Allen also waived his right to a preliminary examination.

Allen was charged Tuesday with federal counts of extortion and the attempted destruction of buildings. His arrest came after explosives and notes threatening Verizon and AT&T were found last week at phone stores in Sault Ste. Marie and Cheboygan.


“Allen stated that he created and placed the letters and bombs because he became dissatisfied with all of the immoral content, including pornography, on phones and cable television,” the FBI said in a court filing.

Handcuffs also were inside boxes containing the pipe bombs. “HJ” and “Handcuff Johnny” were written on the boxes, which were apparently references to Allen, the FBI said. No one was hurt.

Allen also is accused of writing letters found last month at communication towers across Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. The letters made threats and claimed to be from the “Coalition for Moral Telecommunications.”

Defense attorney Stevens J. Jacobs and Assistant U.S. Attorney J. Michael Buckley on Friday asked the court for Allen to undergo a psychiatric evaluation to assess his criminal responsibility.