A US soldier who constructed a bomb to dispense chlorine gas and then detonated the device in a wooded area next to his base has been sentenced to 11 years in prison, the Department of Justice announced in a press release on Tuesday.
“Ryan Keith Taylor, 24, of New Llano, Louisiana, was sentenced by US District Judge Jay C. Zainey for producing, possessing, and using a chemical weapon in violation of federal law,” the release said.
The 11-year sentence will be followed by five years of supervised parole, the release said.
The release made no mention of Taylor’s motive, but offered details of an April 12, 2017 detonation of the device in a national forest adjacent to Fort Polk in the state of Louisiana.
When military police began collecting samples at the blast site, one investigator filled a plastic bag with a rock coated in an unknown substance, the release noted. The bag immediately popped, and the investigator’s plastic gloves and boots began to melt.
During the course of the investigation, law enforcement agents found bomb-making notes, materials and chemical residue in Taylor’s vehicle, apartment and storage building, according to the release. Two victims who inhaled the chlorine gas were treated multiple times for their injuries and effectively ended their military careers.