Suspect in Osage bomb arrested

Tuesday, December 7, 2010 ~ Updated 10:39 AM

A Madison County metal artist has been arrested in connection with a bomb found at the Osage Baptist Church last June.

Mark Krause, 40, of the Forum community in rural Madison County, was arrested in Seattle, Wash. last Friday without incident.

According to authorities, Krause became a person of interest in late November after evidence linking him to the bomb was found in his foreclosed Forum home by a cleaning crew sent there by the bank.

The bomb Krause allegedly crafted was described by experts as an Improvised Explosive Device (IED), fashioned from a soda can containing explosives and a triggering mechanism.

It was discovered at the Osage Baptist Church by an unsuspecting church secretary after voting in the June 8 Preferential Primary Run-off Election took place.

The IED triggering mechanism was designed to trigger an explosion when the can was lifted from the surface -- but it failed. The soda can was carried outside and detonated by a bomb squad using a water cannon.

An investigation was launched by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and all poll workers were questioned at length.

Krause is reportedly a well-known metal artist, having worked with acclaimed Fayetteville sculptor Hank Kaminsky on the World Peace Prayer Fountain on the Fayetteville town square.

Kaminsky, according to an Arkansas Democrat Gazette article, said he was shocked when the FBI contacted him about Krause.

He said Krause was concerned about other peoples lives, he was a well-known artist, and a good artist, particularly in forged iron, adding, "I never could imagine him doing anything like that."

According to Kenny Elser, assistant U.S. Attorney with the U.S. Department of Justice, Krause was arrested without incident in Seattle Friday morning and made his initial court appearance there Friday afternoon.

He said Krause admitted he was the person named in the warrant and he did not contest his return to Arkansas.

Elser said it will likely be the first of the year before Krause is returned to Arkansas. He will not be held in Carroll County.

Instead, because he's in the custody of the U.S. Marshall's Office, Krause will be detained in another facility, Elser said, such as the Benton or Washington county jail.

He will appear in federal court on the charges, either in Harrison or Fort Smith initially, depending on the magistrate's schedule, Elser said, but his trial will be in Harrison.

Krause is charged with attempted use of force against those engaged in federally protected activities, and possession of a firearm, namely a destructive device, not registered to him in the National Firearms and Registration and Transfer Record.

He was arrested by an FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force, said U.S. Attorney Deborah Groom, of the Western District of Arkansas, who issued a press release.

In that release, Valerie Parlave, special agent in charge for the FBI Little Rock office said, "The FBI would like to thank those members of the public and the Carroll County Sheriff's Office who were alert and vigilant back in June 2010 in initially reporting and responding to the incident at the polling site.

"The FBI relies upon the vigilant efforts of the public and local law enforcement to help protect the American people."

The press release goes on to say that the charges against Krause are only allegations.

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  • I'm just curious why someone would select such a small precinct as Osage that has, maybe, 200 voters .

    -- Posted by Doodad on Tue, Dec 7, 2010, at 10:54 AM
  • This is absurd. I have known Mark for nearly 20 years, and he is an dear friend, incredibly loving father, remarkable metal artist and all around great guy that will do anything to help a friend or neighbor!

    For the first time in my life I have a true understanding of what it must have been like to watch the Gestapo haul your friends and loved-ones away, accused ad convicted of grievances they were not even connected to--scared yourself to speak out, but even more scared that the life of a very good and decent man could be ruined by ridiculous accusations of a terrorist-witch-hunt.

    I am sure many of you have seen the peace fountain on the Fayetteville square that Mark helped create. Here is another video of one of his metal sculptures:

    Mark is an artist. Not a terrorist.

    -- Posted by claraT on Tue, Dec 7, 2010, at 4:26 PM
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