Michelle Kolts is the Florida woman who is accused of building and possessing 24 pipe bombs that could have claimed “significant lives” and done “catastrophic damage,” the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office has said. Kolts, 27, is a resident of Wimauma, Florida, a community just south of Tampa.
Online records show that Kolts was arrested at her job. Kolts was then taken to her home where she admitted to making the bombs, according to Hillsborough County Sheriff Chad Chronister. Her home is located along the 5000 block of Jagged Cloud Drive. Kolts was taken into custody just before midnight on October 3. Those records show that Kolts is being held on a bond of $180,000. Among her possessions was a copy of the white supremacist book, “The Turner Diaries.”
Kolts is facing charges of 24 counts of making a destructive device which is a second-degree felony. If found guilty on all charges, Kolts could face 15 years in prison.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. The Amount of Weaponry Recovered at Kolts’ Home Was ‘Astonishing,’ the Sheriff Said
In a press conference announcing Kolts’ arrest, Hillsborough County Sheriff Chad Chronister said Kolts’ parents found pipe bombs in their daughter’s room. Chronister said that Kolts’ parents called the police immediately. The sheriff described the number of weapons recovered at the home as “astonishing.” The sheriff said that books regarding domestic terrorism and murder were found at the home. Kolts is suffering from mental illness and is “a little bit on the autism spectrum,” according to the sheriff. The suspect did not have a specific list of people to harm or places to attack, the sheriff also said.
2. Kolts Was ‘Consumed’ by the Columbine Shooting & the Oklahoma City Bombing
The sheriff told the media that officers received a call about Kolts in August 2018 after a publisher raised concerns about Kolts’ ordering multiple terrorist and murderer’s manifests. The sheriff said that Kolts had become “consumed” with the Columbine High School massacre and the Oklahoma City bombing.
The sheriff’s office later tweeted photos showing a bow-and-arrow, multiple handguns and long guns, knives and an axe, all of which investigators say was found in Kolts’ home.
3. Kolts Studied Architectural Design in College
The Tampa Bay Times reports that Kolts is employed as a laborer at Chadwell Supply, a building maintenance company’s, Tampa location. Kolts says that she is an unemployed design drafter on her LinkedIn page. On that page Kolts says that she is a graduate of Emerald Ridge High School in Puyallup, Washington, and of Green River Community College in Auburn, Washington.
4. Kolts’ Most Recent Facebook Post Was About Military Suicides
The most recent visible Facebook post on Kolts’ page sees her seeking donations for Stop Soldier Suicide, a charity set up to deal with the growing number of military veterans who take their own lives. Sheriff Chronister told the media on the day of Kolts’ arrest that the suspect’s parents are both in the military.
Kolts says on her Facebook page she has worked for Chadwell Supply since May 2017.
5. Kolts’ Parents Are Co-Operating With the Investigation
Sheriff Chronister said that Kolts’ parents were co-operating with the investigation into their daughter. Kolts’ mother is listed as being in the U.S. Army reserve and was formerly an employee of Boeing. The sheriff said, “You can appreciate the fact these parents had the courage to call us. It would have taken less than 60 seconds to spark those pipe bombs.”