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CA man denies throwing pipe bombs at police, faces life in prison

A man accused of throwing pipe bombs at police during a car chase pleaded not guilty Wednesday to a dozen charges and could face up to life in prison if convicted, prosecutors said.

Daniel Richard Garcia, 42, of Concord, entered pleas to six counts of detonating an explosive device with intent to commit murder; three counts of possession of an explosive device in public; one count of possession of an incendiary device and two counts of second-degree robbery and recklessly evading police, the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office said in a statement.

According to police, Garcia demanded money from a worshipper during Sunday evening services at the Saints Peter and Paul Roman Catholic Church.

CA MAN ARRESTED AFTER ASSAULTING CHURCH PARISHIONER, THROWING PIPE BOMBS AT POLICE

CA Fox News graphic

Daniel Richard Garcia was previously convicted of a separate bombing incident, court documents say. (Fox News)

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“The parishioner continued to pray and ignored him, at which point the suspect then violently assaulted this parishioner, punching them in the head,” police said in a statement.

The parishioner, who didn’t know Garcia, was temporarily knocked unconscious, police said.

Garcia then drove off and during a chase threw two pipe bombs out of the car window at pursuing officers, narrowly missing them, police alleged.

California Highway Patrol officers took over and the 30-minute chase ended with Garcia being arrested after his car crashed in the Bay Area city of Martinez, authorities said.

There were no reports of injuries or property damage, police said.

Garcia previously was convicted of another bombing, according to court documents.

He set off a homemade bomb under the SUV of a former tenant in Fairfield, northeast of San Francisco, and was sentenced to 35 years in federal prison but was released in 2019.

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Janita Reed told KGO-TV that she and her family had rented two bedrooms of Garcia’s home in 2011.

“On the third day, we found out he was into crystal meth and steroids so we got a taste of it that night. He ran around the house naked,” Reed said.

The family moved but returned to tow a car with a broken transmission and he confronted them, Reed said.

“He was all tick-tick boom and pointed at us,” she said. “He had been talking about explosives, how easy it was to get the materials and he has half of it in the garage already,” Reed said.

The family later moved out of state.

“I knew he would do this again. This is why we didn’t go back,” Reed said.

Public records also show Garcia was arrested in 1996 on suspicion of arson and use of a destructive device, the San Francisco Chronicle reported.

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