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Student Charged In Mock Threat Against Bookstore

March 21, 1989

NAPERVILLE, Ill. (AP) _ A student who wanted to support author Salman Rushdie’s right to publish ″The Satanic Verses″ made ″a dumb move,″ entering a bookstore with a fake Molotov cocktail, police said.

Scott Graves, 17, was charged with disorderly conduct and freed on $100 bail, authorities said.

Janet Izral, a clerk at Crown Books in this Chicago suburb, said the teen- ager brandished a bottle that looked like a firebomb Friday.

″He asked where the book was″ then walked to the shelves containing ″The Satanic Verses″ and asked the assistant manager for a lighter, she said.

When the manager refused, the youngster left, Ms. Izral said.

The high school senior was arrested in the parking lot.

Detective Mark Carlson said Graves had no criminal record and the bottle contained only water.

″He’s a decent kid,″ Carlson said. ″He just made a dumb move.″

″(Graves) has got a very strong belief of First Amendment rights,″ the detective said. ″He feels very strongly about the controversy (and) that the author has a right to publish anything he wishes.″

Iranian leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini has proclaimed a death sentence for Rushdie, whose book is considered blasphemous by many Moslems.

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