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Salem Police Charge Two In Rainbow Times Newspaper Box Explosion

SALEM (CBS) – Police summonsed two New Hampshire men in the August explosion that destroyed an LGBTQ publication’s newspaper box in the center of town.

On Aug. 23 at approximately 1:20 a.m., Salem police observed a group of seven people put an unknown device into a Rainbow Times newspaper box and run before an explosion “rocked the downtown area,” according to police.

Wednesday, police announced they summonsed two in connection with the crime. Both will be formally charged in court on Friday.

Police charged John Richard of Holliston, N.H. and Lawrence Gilman of Milford, N.H. with malicious or wanton defacing or damaging of property over $250 and throwing, secreting, launching or placing of an incendiary device.

“We want these individuals prosecuted on charges that will stick and we think and we think that we have that now,” said Editor In Chief Nicole Lashomb.

At the time, Salem’s Police Chief told WBZ she considered the act a hate crime.

“Of course, there’s a little disappointment, definitely,” said publisher Gricel Ocasio. “I was expecting, perhaps, a different outcome because to us, this happened so many times, that we expected it to be something else.”

A new newspaper box in Salem housing The Rainbow Times after vandals blew up the old box. (WBZ)

A new newspaper box in Salem housing The Rainbow Times after vandals blew up the old box. (WBZ)

The Rainbow Times, New England’s largest LGBTQ newspaper, replaced the destroyed box later in August. The explosion was just one of numerous incidents reported to police regarding the paper’s box over the summer.

Richard and Gilman are scheduled to be arraigned in Salem District Court on Friday at 9 a.m.

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