Law enforcement has arrested a man who allegedly brought a pipe bomb to a rally in support of a Florida man detained on criminal charges stemming from the January 6th, 2021 protest at the US Capitol. Garrett Smith, a Pinellas County man, was apprehended on Thursday morning after a rally in support of Jeremy Brown.
Sheriff’s deputies arrested Smith after they recount him quickly fleeing from the scene of the demonstration. A search of Smith’s backpack revealed an item law enforcement is calling a “pipe-type explosive device.”
Smith was carrying a helmet decorated with an ANTIFA symbol in his backpack. The red and black drawing of three arrows has been associated with the left-wing street terror movement for years.
The Pinellas County Sheriff, Bob Gualtieri, briefed members of the community on Smith’s possessions. Gualtieri revealed that Smith carried a document titled “direct action checklist,” and confirming that he had returned from the the left-wing militant hotbed of Portland, Oregon months ago. The “checklist” referenced weapons, armor, a gas mask, and “flammable rags.”
Sheriff’s deputies allegedly confirmed that the device Smith brought to the scene of the rally was an active explosive device. Gualtieri is describing Brown as an ideological lone wolf “sleeper,” revealing that the leftist militant is declining to cooperate with authorities’ investigation thus far. Police allegedly located more explosive devices in a search of Smith’s home, including one grenade-style object.
“Where was he going to go next? What was he going to do?” said Gualtieri. “Of course, we don’t know the answer to that, but he had all the equipment to cause destruction.”
Footage of the rally in support of Brown shows a police officer revealing that law enforcement had learned of the presence of a “suspicious device” at the rally.
Smith, who faces the federal justice system on account of the destructive device, is being held in the Pinellas County Jail on a $300,000 bond.