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Federal jury convicts California man in 2008 courthouse bombing

By the CNN Wire Staff
  • Donny Love was found guilty of the use of a weapon of mass destruction
  • Prosecutors consider him the mastermind behind the federal courthouse bombing
  • No one was injured in the blast
  • Three other people were previously charged and pleaded guilty in connection to the case

(CNN) -- A federal jury convicted a California man Monday in a case in which prosecutors say he convinced a woman to bomb a federal courthouse so he could turn her and others involved the scheme in to authorities, and collect reward money.

Donny Love was found guilty on 10 charges, including the use of a weapon of mass destruction, for the role he played in the May 4, 2008, attack on San Diego's Edward J. Schwartz Federal Courthouse.

No one was injured in the blast that damaged the building's front lobby, shattered a glass door and broke a window in a building across the street.

Love could face between 30 years and life in prison, said Assistant U.S. Attorney Fred Sheppard.

During the two-week trial, prosecutors painted Love as the mastermind behind the blast.

He directed two others, Rachelle Lynette Carlock and Ella Louise Sanders to purchase explosive powder and to steal bomb-making materials, they said. Carlock was an on-again, off-again girlfriend to Love, said Sheppard.

According to testimony, Carlock and Eric Reginald Robinson then drove from Love's house to San Diego with a backpack, containing three pipe bombs. Carlock detonated the bombs at the front doors of the courthouse, prosecutors said.

Carlock, Sanders and Robinson were charged and each previously pleaded guilty for their parts in the plan.

At the time of the bombing, Love was in "dire financial straits," prosecutors said, and faced jail time stemming from two pending criminal cases.

"The evidence showed that he directed the May 4, 2008, bombing for the purpose of obtaining reward money and a break on his state charges by providing information about the bombing to law enforcement," prosecutors said in a statement.

"The success of this fraudulent scheme required that he provide false and misleading information about the bombing and induce others to do the same in order to conceal his own involvement and collect a reward and other benefits from the government," they continued.

Love's attorney, Robert Boyce, said it was too early to know whether his client would appeal.

"The jury made a decision and they disagreed with us," he said.