Man arrested in connection with attempted arson at Longmeadow Jewish facility released

Hampden County

BOSTON (WWLP) – An East Longmeadow man accused of attempted arson at a Longmeadow Jewish living facility has been released on several conditions one day after his arrest.

Documents obtained by 22News from the U.S. District Court of Massachusetts late Thursday night indicates that a judge ordered 36-year-old John Michael Rathbun released at an undisclosed bail or bond amount during his arraignment on Thursday.

John Michael Rathbun (Credit: East Longmeadow Police Department)

According to the court documents, Rathbun must follow the following release conditions:

  • The Defendant shall not commit any offense in violation of federal, state or local law while on release in this case
  • The Defendant shall maintain his residence. Defendant shall advise the court, Pretrial Services, defense counsel and the U.S. attorney in writing at least ten days before any proposed change in address and telephone number
  • The Defendant shall report as soon as possible, but no later than twenty-four hours after, to the Pretrial Services office any contact with any law enforcement personnel, including, but not limited to, any arrest, questioning, or traffic stop
  • Defendant must cooperate in the collection of a DNA sample if the collection is authorized by 42 U.S.C. 14135a
  • The Defendant shall appear at all proceedings as required and shall appear at a later date

Additional conditions Rathbun must abide by includes refraining from unlawful possession of narcotic drug or any other controlled substance, refrain from possessing a firearm, submit urine testing and to stay away from excessive use of alcohol.

Rathbun is also not allowed to travel to the District of Massachusetts without permission from the probation and pretrial department.

On Wednesday, FBI agents searched a home at 20 Lori Lane in East Longmeadow in connection with a possible hate crime. Federal agents arrested Rathbun in connection with an explosive device found outside Ruth’s House assisted living in Longmeadow. Ruth’s House is a JGS Lifecare facility.

Longmeadow police said John Rathbun made an explosive out of a small gasoline container that was found outside the facility on April 2.

According to an FBI complaint released on Wednesday, agents found a white supremacist organization on the internet where users had planned to target the Jewish nursing home.But they have not explicitly connected Rathbun to the organization. 

The investigators were able to identify Rathbun by using DNA that they found at the site on the failed explosive.

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