Portland fire-bomb suspect linked to anarchists

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PORTLAND — A federal judge has allowed a man accused of throwing a firebomb at a Portland police car to be released while awaiting trial, as long as he doesn’t get together with anarchists.

“You’re going to be on a very tight leash,” Judge Janice Stewart warned Sergey Turzhanskiy on Wednesday. “If you violate any one of these conditions, you’ll find yourself back here.”

Turzhanskiy, 25, is accused of throwing a flaming Pabst Blue Ribbon beer bottle, containing lighter fluid and a rag, at a marked police car in a precinct parking lot in November, The Oregonian reported. A trial has been scheduled March 5.

Officers said he threw the bottle twice, and both times it bounced off the police car before finally breaking on the pavement. Police said he was on a bicycle, and an officer chasing him caught up when he crashed it.

He is charged in federal court with attempted arson and possession of a destructive device.

Stewart ordered that Turzhanskiy have no contact with members of a group that a federal prosecutor called the Resist the NW Grand Jury.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Stephen F. Peifer said the group is made up of anarchists who are “ in the process of trying to obstruct” the federal inquiry into the May Day firebombing at the Seattle federal courthouse.

Pfeifer cited links such as online references on anarchist sites to “Our friend Sergey” and “Free Sergey.”

Public defender Patrick J. Ehlers said Turzhanskiy does not have a significant criminal record — a conviction for contributing to the delinquency of a minor — and he has a job doing transcriptions at $12 an hour for his girlfriend’s father, a doctor who works out of state.

Ehlers argued that Turzhanskiy is not a danger to the community, and the flaming bottle wasn’t thrown at a person.

“This is not something like an apartment complex or a residence, where someone was in immediate danger,” he argued.