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Homeless vet charged in attack on power station after McVeigh verdict

June 6, 1997

REDWOOD CITY, Calif. (AP) _ A homeless veteran charged with a shooting attack on a power substation left a ``McVeigh Guilty″ newspaper headline and a Confederate flag at the site, police said.

Police arrested Peter Brooks Jaffe, 42, at an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting in San Carlos on Wednesday. He later confessed, led police to the AR-15 rifle he used and apologized for his actions, Redwood City police Sgt. Ron Matuszak said.

The shooter fired about 60 rounds into a Pacific Gas & Electric Co. substation early Tuesday, shutting off power to several thousand people and doing $500,000 damage, police said.

The attack was less than a day after a federal jury in Denver convicted Timothy McVeigh in the Oklahoma City bombing.

Jaffe was charged with vandalism and shooting at an inhabited dwelling because some rounds hit nearby homes. He could also face a federal charge of attacking a power plant, which carries a 10-year penalty.

Matuszak could not explain Jaffe’s fascination with the Confederacy, but said the suspect told police the last president he recognizes is Jefferson Davis.

``He described himself as a secessionist,″ Matuszak said. ``He doesn’t belong to any organized militia, but he is very upset with what he describes as the Yankee government.″ Jaffe, who served in the Army twice, may have had a specific gripe over treatment at a Department of Veterans Affairs hospital, Matuszak said.

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