MIAMI BEACH, FLA. (WSVN) – Police say they stepped in right on time to stop a man accused of attempting to commit a hate crime in Miami Beach.
Surveillance video from inside the elevator of the Pavilion Condominium showed 73-year-old Walter Stolper hiding containers of gasoline inside a cart.
Police said Stolper, who was arrested in July, had poured gallons of gasoline down a trash chute in an attempt to torch his Miami Beach condo building.
“Our detectives intercepted him with two filled gasoline containers,” said Miami Beach Police Officer Ernesto Rodriguez during an interview in July.
Luis Diaz, the man who alerted police, said Stolper’s anger was aimed at Jewish people.
“That he was going to burn the building down with a bunch of Jews in it,” said Diaz in July.
Diaz said Stolper had made threats for years.
“I didn’t think he would take it this far. He said he doesn’t like Jews. He’s a Nazi,” Diaz said.
Pictures released from the Miami-Dade state attorney’s office showed Stolper’s apartment was filled with Nazi memorabilia and reading materials, including Adolf Hitler’s autobiography.
Police also found a Hitler holiday mug, walls decorated with dreaded symbols and offensive images.
Stolper is now facing charges for a hate crime, attempted murder and attempted arson.
“This is a troubled individual. We will be working closely with the state attorney’s office to ensure a successful prosecution,” said Rodriguez in July.
Stolper is due back in court for a bond hearing in February, but state prosecutors hope to keep him behind bars while he awaits trial.