Second man sentenced for damaging SUVs, other vandalism

Associated Press/April 14, 2004

Richmond, Va. -- A second member of an extreme environmentalist group was sentenced Wednesday to three years in prison for vandalizing 25 sport utility vehicles, fast-food restaurants and other property.

John B. Wade, 19, was one of three members of the Earth Liberation Front charged in the 2002 vandalism spree. On Monday, 19-year-old Aaron L. Linas was sentenced to 31/2 years.

Prosecutors also said the teenagers unsuccessfully attempted to blow up construction vehicles worth $360,000 at a high-end shopping center under construction near Richmond. A letter was left on several of the vandalized SUVs, blaming the owners for pollution and the war in Iraq.

"It's never pleasant to prosecute young people who have so much promise,'' prosecutor Brian R. Hood said. "These acts were not random. They were not impulsive.''

Wade's attorney, Murray J. Janus, said his client was grounded by his parents and was not with the other suspects at the time of the vandalism.

A sentencing date for the third defendant, Adam V. Blackwell, has not been set.

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