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Bomb Scare at Clinics Ruin Protest

October 5, 1998

FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. (AP) _ Organizers of an anti-abortion rally said hundreds of people stayed away from the protest because bombs had been discovered at two Fayetteville abortion clincs.

``This did more damage to this movement than anything I’ve ever known,″ said Scarlett Cheney of Fayetteville Right To Life, who said her group opposes all violence. Only about 200 of an expected crowd of 2,000 showed up for Sunday’s protest.

On Saturday, bombs were found at the Carolina Women’s Medical Clinic and the Hallmark Clinic. Authorities discovered the devices before they exploded, and the clinics _ which were both hit by arsonists last month _ were closed at the time.

``It’s too much of a coincidence not to believe the same person or persons were responsible for this,″ said Cumberland County Sheriff Earl ``Moose″ Butler. ``It’s just a miracle that neither bomb blew up and that no one was injured or killed.″

Harold Hoke, who owns the Hallmark Clinic, said he will continue to open the clinic.

``I’m not going to allow these people to do this to me,″ Hoke said Sunday. ``They have protested, had sit-ins and have done just about everything, but we just have not allowed them to ruin us over the years, and they are not going to now.″

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