As millions across the country worry about their reproductive rights, some alt-right individuals have taken to attacking healthcare facilities. A Florida man is facing multiple charges in connection with an attack on a Planned Parenthood in Fort Myers on Oct. 10. Arrested Tuesday, Everett Little faces charges including first-degree arson, using an incendiary device, damage to property, and criminal mischief, according to the Lee County Sheriff’s office.
The 20-year-old allegedly threw multiple Molotov cocktails—self-made firebombs—at the building, causing one wall to catch fire. Surveillance footage caught Little outside of the building pouring gasoline into bottles and throwing them, NBC News reported.
According to the sheriff’s office, deputies were able to identify Little after surveillance images depicting the suspect were shared on Facebook by Southwest Florida Crime Stoppers. "That act was caught on camera, and through Crime Stoppers, he's behind bars," Sheriff Carmine Marceno said. "Those tips led to an arrest, and we were fortunate that those tips came in."
Following his arrest, the group issued this statement on Facebook: "We asked for tips to identify this suspect, and the community responded quickly! Thank you to the anonymous tipsters who reached out to us in regards to this case."
Surprisingly, this incident isn’t the first time Little has been featured in a Crime Stoppers news release. Local news outlets reported that Little was abducted by his father in 2011 while the man was sharing custody with Little’s mother following their divorce. While unrelated to the incident of his domestic terrorism, news outlets featured this information while reporting his charges. One can’t help but think such additions to stories are added to elicit sympathy for white perpetrators of violence. Had Little been Black or brown, I doubt information about his troubled childhood would be shared.
According to court documents, Little remains in custody on a $21,500 bond and is set to appear in court on Nov. 16. It is unclear how much time he could face should he be convicted.
Unfortunately, this incident isn’t isolated. Young alt-right individuals have consistently attacked Planned Parenthood facilities across the country. In January, Daily Kos reported an incident in which a teen intentionally threw a lit object through the window of a Planned Parenthood before vandalizing the building with indirect hate speech. Yet despite these crimes against its facilities, Planned Parenthood continues to stay strong and provide health care to those in need.
“I’m sorry that someone would do something so violent,” Stephanie Fraim, the president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of Southwest and Central Florida, said of the incident. “I’m sorry that their life is so disturbed that they would think this is an appropriate action.”
“I imagine they want to disrupt our care and perhaps try to shut us down by damaging our building,” Fraim continued. “Our staff are understandably shook up a little that someone would attack a health care organization when people are coming to us for health and safety.”
While conservatives and the alt-right deem Planned Parenthood a facility that “takes away life” and only provides abortions, Planned Parenthood does a lot more than providing reproductive care to women. According to its website, the organization provides essential healthcare services including STD testing, well-woman exams, cancer screening and prevention, hormone therapy, infertility services, and general health care.