A federal grand jury has indicted a Pittsburgh couple, Brian and Krystal DiPippa, on charges of conspiracy and obstruction of law enforcement during civil disorder. The couple allegedly used explosives while protesting a speech by Michael Knowles at the University of Pittsburgh in April. Brian DiPippa is accused of igniting and dropping two homemade smoke bomb containers near people waiting to enter the event, as well as throwing a large explosive firework at Pitt Police officers. If found guilty, the couple could face up to 10 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $500,000 for the charges of conspiracy and obstruction, and a minimum 10-year prison sentence along with a fine of up to $250,000 for using an explosive to commit a federal felony.
The indictment comes as a response to years of left-wing political violence against conservatives, according to Michael Knowles, a Catholic commentator and speaker involved in the event that was targeted. Knowles expressed satisfaction with the arrest of the couple and emphasized the need to discourage political violence on college campuses.
Knowles also mentioned that the FBI contacted him for an interview following the incident, but he declined due to concerns about the agency’s recent targeting of conservative Catholics and pro-life advocates. While acknowledging his past trust in the FBI, Knowles expressed doubt about the agency’s commitment to bringing charges against Antifa activists. Despite his hesitation, Knowles admitted he was wrong and commended the DOJ for pursuing the case against the couple.
This indictment highlights the ongoing issue of political violence and protests turning violent on college campuses and the need for law enforcement to address the issues of unrest and safety, especially surrounding attacks and prejudice against conservative and Christians.