Woman ‘Consumed’ with Columbine Shooting Had Dozens of Pipe Bombs, Intended to Use Them: Deputies

A woman in Hillsborough County, Florida is charged with allegedly making dozens of pipe bombs with the goal of hurting people. Michelle Louise Kolts, 27, faces 24 counts of making a destructive device with intent to harm, Sheriff Chad Chronister said in a press conference Friday.

The defendant allegedly possessed two dozen pipe bombs as well as smokeless pistol powder, fuse material, 23 different knives, two hatchets, nunchucks, two BB pellet-type rifles, six BB pellet-type handguns, and dozens of books and DVDs about murder, mass killings, domestic terrorism, and bomb making.

Chronister estimated that it would’ve taken less than 60 seconds per bomb for Kolts to add the requisite powder and fuse–which she already possessed–in order to detonate the bomb. He said potentially hundreds if not thousands of people could’ve been harmed.

He said that Kolts first popped up on law enforcement’s radar last year. A publishing company said she was purchasing documents including documents about bomb making. They considered it suspicious. Chronister described the defendant as being “consumed with the Columbine and Oklahoma killings.”

Deputies determined at the time, however, that she wasn’t a danger to herself or others. Her parents said she was on the autism spectrum and she said she didn’t mean to harm anyone, Chronister claimed.

That changed a year later. Her parents found what seemed to be a bomb making materials and numerous weapons in her room on Thursday afternoon, Chronister said. They reported the find to deputies, who found Kolts at her job. She was arrested without incident, the sheriff said.

This time, she admitted to making the devices and that she planned on using these to hurt people, Chronister said. The sheriff lauded the parents for reaching out to investigators.

“While this case is certainly alarming, it is not to demonize another individual struggling with mental health,” he said. “It is to highlight the importance or speaking up when you see something that isn’t right, and what can be prevented when you do.”

Chronister did not say where the defendant planned on using the explosives. He described her confession to law enforcement as “generic,” in that she stated that she wanted to hurt people.

Kolts remains at the Hillsborough County Jail in lieu of $180,000 bond as of Friday afternoon. She has no attorney of record at this time.

[Mugshot via Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office]

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