KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A federal judge Wednesday sentenced a 43-year-old Missouri man to five years in federal prison for arson at a clinic operated by Planned Parenthood Great Plains, according to a news release.
U.S. District Judge Brian C. Wimes ordered Wesley Brian Kaster, of Columbia, to serve the sentence without parole.
“This defendant’s criminal behavior placed the community in an unacceptable risk of danger,” said Timothy Garrison, U.S. attorney for the Western District of Missouri, in the release.
“We will not tolerate the use of violence and arson as a means to achieve personal political or policy goals,” Garrison said. “This attack is the antithesis of everything for which the best ideals of this nation have always stood.”
Kaster pleaded guilty in November to one count of maliciously using explosive materials to damage a building owned by an organization that receives federal financial assistance and one count of violating the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances Act.
Kaster admitted in his plea that he broke the glass of a door to the Columbia Health Center and threw a Molotov cocktail into the facility. He said the reason behind the arson was because Planned Parenthood provided reproductive health services at the clinic, according to the release.
No one was injured in the fire, which was set at about 4 a.m. The building, on North Providence Road, was unoccupied and the building’s fire suppression system extinguished the fire.
Kaster has remained in federal custody without bond since his arrest in March 2019.
The FBI, along with Columbia police and the Missouri Highway Patrol, investigated the arson.
©2020 The Kansas City Star (Kansas City, Mo.)