Scarpitti is charged with a June 2001 logging-truck arson along with Jacob Sherman, Jeremy Rosenbloom, and Angela Marie Cesario. Scarpitti and Sherman have also been indicted for firebombing cement trucks at a sand and gravel facility in April 2001.
Sherman has pleaded guilty to his part in the crimes and will accept a prison term of 41 months when he is sentenced on February 20. Cesario was arrested in August. Rosenbloom maintains his innocence and will be tried in late February. Scarpitti is still on the run. The four are accused of acting on behalf of the Earth Liberation Front (ELF), which declared in a statement following the cement-truck arson: “let this be a warning to all the greedy corporations.” The FBI calls ELF the nation’s number one domestic terrorist threat.
But not everyone is convinced that politically motivated arsonists are all that bad. The faculty of Portland State University (PSU) is coming to their defense. Declaring that she knows Jeremy Rosenbloom personally and can’t bear to see him spend too much time in jail, the Chair of PSU’s Economics Department recently pushed a resolution through the Faculty Senate that decries use of the term “eco-terrorist” as “inflammatory” (we can only assume that the double-entendre was unintentional).