Ohio Man Pleads Guilty to Trying to Kill a Romantic Rival with a Gift Wrapped Bomb

BALTIMORE — An Ohio man pleaded guilty to federal weapons charges after admitting that he seriously hurt a love rival in Maryland by leaving a homemade bomb in a gift-wrapped package on the victim’s front door.

In connection with the 2020 explosion at the victim’s house in Carroll County, Maryland, Clayton Alexander McCoy, 32, of Chesterland, Ohio, pled guilty in Baltimore on Wednesday to carrying explosives with intent to hurt and to possession of an unregistered firearm/explosive device. He faces up to 30 years in prison if convicted.

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U.S. Attorney Erek Barron stated in a press statement that McCoy revealed as part of his guilty plea that he had constructed a pipe bomb at his house in Ohio and driven it to the victim’s home with the intent to murder the guy.

According to the court records, McCoy knew the victim and his girlfriend via a live-action role-playing war game called Dagorhir.

McCoy confessed his love interest to the lady in October 2020, but she later revealed that she was already in a relationship and did not return his affections.

Prosecutors claim that McCoy plotted to make and send a bomb to the boyfriend of the girl in order to eliminate him as a love competitor.

McCoy went to the man’s house late in the month and put the shrapnel and BB bomb wrapped in a present on the front porch. The bomb went off as soon as the victim opened the package, severely injuring him.

Prosecutors said the man spent almost two weeks in the hospital, needed a walker, and had repeated procedures to remove shrapnel from his body.

Two lawyers from the Office of the Federal Public Defender defended McCoy, but neither of them answered an email asking for a comment.

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