Incident Summary:

11/05/2001: Ian Jacob Wallace, acting on behalf of the Earth Liberation Front (ELF) attempted to destroy two forestry buildings at the Michigan Technological University campus by planting two firebombs, made of combustible liquids, ignition sources and timers, outside the buildings. In this case the building targeted was the U.J. Noblet Forestry Building. There were no casualties in the incident, nor damages as the devices were found unexploded because the timers failed to trigger the bombs to ignite. The devices were subsequently defused by authorities. The motive was to "destroy tree research and intimidate the public." Wallace pleaded guilty in 2008 to charges for this incident, and was sentenced in 2009, to three years in Federal prison.



United States

North America

region/u.s. state:



Attack Information
Type of Attack (more) Facility/Infrastructure Attack
Successful Attack? (more) No
Target Information (more)
Target Type: Educational Institution
Name of Entity Michigan Technological University
Specific Description U.J. Noblet Forestry Building
Nationality of Target United States
Additional Information
Hostages No
Ransom No
Property Damage No
Weapon Information
Type Sub-type
Incendiary Gasoline or Alcohol
Weapon Details
An incendiary device made of combustible liquids, ignition sources and timing device
Additional Information
Suicide Attack?No
Part of Multiple Incident?Yes
Criterion 1 (more) Yes
Criterion 2 (more) Yes
Criterion 3 (more) Yes
Doubt Terrorism Proper (more) No
Additional Information Wallace had an accomplice who traveled with him to Houghton to commit the attack, but this person is unknown.
Perpetrator Group Information
Group Name Claimed Responsibility
Earth Liberation Front (ELF) No
Perpetrator Statistics
Number of Perpetrators 1
Number of Captured Perpetrators 1
Casualty Information
Total Number of Casualties 0 Fatalities / 0 Injured
Total Number of Fatalities 0
Number of U.S. Fatalities 0
Number of Perpetrator Fatalities 0
Total Number of Injured 0
Number of U.S. Injured 0
Number of Perpetrators Injured 0
Eric Lindquist, "Former honor student turns eco-terrorist," The Leader-Telegram, October 4, 2009.
"Information Issued by U.S. Attorney's Office for the Western District of Michigan on March 27: Sentencing in 2001 Eco-Terrorism Attempt at Michigan Technological University," US Fed News, April 13, 2009.
" N.Y. Student gets 3 years in prison for eco-crime," Associated Press State & Local Wire, March 23, 2009.