Mark Thomas Reno, who is now deceased, is named in a civil complaint filed by the U.S. Attorney’s Officec for the Eastern District of Tennessee as being the man responsible.
Reno, of Jefferson City, was arrested July 18. He was released from custody on Aug. 14 due to health reasons, the US Attorney’s Office said in a press release. Reno died the next day, on Aug. 15, at the Laurel County Correctional Center in Kentucky while awaiting trial for allegedly shooting at a federal office building in Knoxville.
“The man who was arrested in this case is not the only one who holds responsibility. When politicians use hateful rhetoric against abortion providers and support extreme laws, like the total abortion ban we have in Tennessee, it shouldn’t surprise us that some people believe real-world violence is justified. Fires need fuel, and politicians have been all too eager to provide it,” said Ashley Coffield, CEO of Planned Parenthood of Tennessee and North Mississippi. Coffield spoke Monday at an online press conference.
A fire destroyed the Planned Parenthood building in Knoxville on Dec. 31. Investigators announced a week later that it was ruled an arson. The clinic was undergoing a $2.2 million renovation at the time of the fire.
Reno is also responsible for shots fired into the Planned Parenthood building in Knoxville on January 22, Coffield said.
“According to court documents, it is alleged that on Jan. 22, 2021, Reno utilized a sedan and a shotgun to fire an incendiary round into the entrance to the Planned Parenthood – Knoxville, Tennessee, Health Center (the Center); on Dec 31, 2021,” says a statement from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Tennessee.
Reno was charged with shooting at a federal building in Knoxville on July 3. As part of this investigation, Reno was recorded by undercover FBI agents saying that he attended the January 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol and he was part of a group called the Church Militant Resistance. His arrest warrant states the group is a local chapter of the Church Militant organization whose stated mission is to resist actions that oppose the Catholic Orthodoxy and/or decency.
The civil filings seek forfeiture of two vehicles used in these incidents as well as a .22 caliber rifle with suppressor, according to the court documents.