Unfinished Lives

Remembering LGBT Hate Crime Victims

Heartland Terrorist/Homophobe Threatens Gay Bar With Anthrax

Eric Reece Wiethorn, admitted sending hate letter purporting to be filled with deadly anthrax to a gay bar as "God's judgement" against LGBTQ people. [Ames PD photo]

Eric Reece Wiethorn, 49, admitted sending a hate letter purportedly filled with deadly anthrax to a gay bar as “God’s judgement” against LGBTQ people. [Ames PD photo]

Ames, Iowa – Last Thursday, April 9, police officials announced the arrest of a man who sent a threatening letter that purported to be filled with anthrax to a local gay bar, according to the Des Moines Register. Police arrested 49-year-old Eric Reece Wiethorn of Ames, and charged him with first-degree harassment for sending the letter filled with white power to the Blazing Saddles Bar, forcing it to close. Police, firefighters and an emergency medical containment team in hazmat suits rushed to the scene. The white substance turned out to be harmless, non-toxic Gold Bond powder, but the threat sent a shock wave through the community, especially to LGBTQ Iowans.

This is not the first time the bar has been targeted by threats, but the owner, Robert Eikleberry, acknowledged that the anthrax bluff and accompanying note has been by far the most drastic. Eikleberry told the Register that Blazing Saddles, one of the oldest gay bars in operation in the state of Iowa, has been “the biggest target in town” for years. He described his reaction to the incident to EDGEBoston“I opened it up, white powder popped out, and it was an inflammatory letter. ‘Hate fags, gonna blow this up, gonna blow that up, gonna roast you all after pride’,” he said.

As Gay Star News reports the story, Eikleberry elaborated on terrorist-like threats Wiethorn aimed at him and the patrons of his bar. The message of the letter was, in part, “It’s time for all the faggots and dykes to die on Capital Pride night! Your secret enemies are going to blow up your destination for going to hell tonight, and we’re going to eat roast faggot the following morning. This is your punishment for sinning against God, and hopefully you’ll die from the anthrax on this letter!” Eikleberry went on to say that when the white powder came out at him from the envelope, he called the police immediately. “I opened the mail up thinking it was a thank you letter, it turned out to be a hate letter,” he said.

Police swiftly launched an investigation into the terror threat against the bar and the LGBTQ community, and identified Wiethorn as their top suspect. Under interrogation, Wiethorn admitted sending the letter. He is being held in the Polk County Jail on $2000 bond pending trial.

April 16, 2015 - Posted by | Anglo Americans, Anthrax threat, Anti-LGBT hate crime, death threats, Gay Bars, GLBTQ, Hate Crimes, hate speech, Heterosexism and homophobia, Iowa, LGBTQ, religious hate speech, religious intolerance, Slurs and epithets | , , , , , , , , , , , , ,


  1. Reblogged this on Agender JerBear's Queer World News, Views & More From The City Different – Santa Fe, NM and commented:


    Comment by jerbearinsantafe | April 16, 2015

  2. Reblogged this on ButchCountry67 and commented:

    So much HATE in the name of GOD…. I don’t really care what Religion you practice, or what sexuality you are, But I will tell you this : If your GOD condones Hatred towards another Human being, and you truly believe the Bible says it’s okay to kill another Human being for their sexuality… then you are Believing and Praying to a FALSE GOD! period! there is no debating this fact! and I will also say.. WHO.. gave YOU the right to Judge and Condemn another Human Being ? Let He without sin cast the first stone! you’d be wise to remember that little line before you go and meet your maker.

    Comment by butchcountry67 | April 16, 2015

  3. Aren’t we supposed to be evolved as human beings? Aren’t we the “most intelligent species” on the planet? This is absolutely ridiculous. Keep your opinions to yourself and if you dislike a particular group that’s your right to do so but DON’T harass or harm another human being just because you don’t agree with what they believe in. #humanityunite #gayrights

    Comment by mariaroseholistic | April 16, 2015

  4. Something is really wrong with someone that gets that vicious over other peoples choices. Wonder what God thinks about all this.

    Comment by Gale A. Molinari | April 16, 2015

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