Arrest Warrant Issued in Planned Parenthood Arson Investigation
|FBI Milwaukee April 03, 2012|
Teresa L. Carlson, Special Agent in Charge of the Milwaukee Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI); Chief Greg Peterson of the Grand Chute Police Department (GCPD); Bernard J. Zapor, Special Agent in Charge St. Paul Field Division (ATF); and Outagamie County District Attorney Carrie Schneider announced today the arrest of arson suspect Francis G. Grady (age 50), of Grand Chute, Wisconsin. Grady is charged with arson of a building used in interstate commerce, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 844(i), and intentionally damaging the property of a facility that provides reproductive health services, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Sections 248(a)(3) and (b)(1).
On Sunday, April 1, 2012, a report by a witness indicated a white, SUV-type vehicle was seen leaving the area of the Planned Parenthood offices located at 3800 N. Gillett Street in Grand Chute, Wisconsin. During that time, flames were also observed at the building, and investigators were able to corroborate this information after viewing security video from the location. The video also revealed distinctive markings on the vehicle. A subsequent investigation determined a similar vehicle was involved in a traffic accident in a neighboring jurisdiction sometime after the Planned Parenthood incident was reported. The vehicle was disabled in the accident and towed from the scene.
Using information collected from the accident investigation, investigators were able to conduct a preliminary inspection of the vehicle and identify the driver. The physical description of the driver matched physical characteristics of a male subject observed on the security video provided by Planned Parenthood. That person, allegedly Grady, was located on the evening of April 2. Grady is currently in custody and scheduled to make his initial appearance in U.S. District Court in Green Bay, Wisconsin at 1:30 p.m. tomorrow afternoon.
SAC Carlson said, “The FBI will always investigate and bring to justice anyone who resorts to violence as a means to harm, intimidate, or prevent the public’s right to access reproductive health services.”
This case was investigated by the Grand Chute Police Department, the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF), and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). The case will be prosecuted by the United States Attorney’s Office, Eastern District of Wisconsin.
United States Attorney James L. Santelle, Eastern District of Wisconsin, stated, “When Congress passed the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances (FACE) Act in 1994, it specifically empowered law enforcement to respond to those who engage in violent and other obstructive behaviors that interfere with access to reproductive services. The complaint that we filed today in federal court not only responds to the particular conduct of Francis Grady in committing arson at and causing damage to the Planned Parenthood Clinic in Grand Chute, but it also signals the continuing, strong commitment of federal, state, and local authorities to ensure access to clinics—and to seek criminal penalties against anyone who would compromise that right.” Santelle specifically commended the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the United States Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, the Grand Chute Police Department, and the Office of Outagamie County District Attorney Carrie Schneider for their highly effective, partnered action in responding promptly and effectively to this incident.
The public is warned that an arrest warrant is merely a method by which to charge an individual with criminal conduct. The defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty.