Mark Hofmann survived accidents from a suicide try and went on to face trial within the 1985 Salt Lake Metropolis bombings that killed two folks. Police have been looking out for a serial bomber when Hofmann was discovered injured in his car on October 16, 1985, the day after two separate pipe bombs killed Mormon historian Steve Christensen and housewife Kathy Sheets. Hofmann remains to be alive and serving a life sentence in Utah.
Hofmann killed Christensen in an try to cowl up the paperwork he was forging and promoting to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. The pretend paperwork, and specifically, the infamous Salamander letter, upended the Mormon Church and left believers questioning their religion. The bombings killed Christensen and the spouse of his former enterprise affiliate, Gary Sheets, then injured the person who was believed to be discovering the historic paperwork. This led to early theories that the bombings have been because of the dismantling of the Mormon religion, which was simply as Hofmann supposed. He masterminded the bombings as a diversion from his forgery.
A brand new Netflix docuseries, Homicide Among the many Mormons, examines the unusual case and the motives behind the Salt Lake Metropolis murders. The three-part collection was launched Wednesday, March 3, 2021.
Right here’s what it’s essential know:
Hofmann Was ‘Critically Injured’ within the Bombing Exterior Temple Sq. October 16, 1985
Hofmann suffered severe accidents after from his suicide try, and was in essential situation within the hospital for his accidents, based on a 1985 New York Occasions archive article.
“Lieutenant Grey mentioned Mr. Hofmann had simply gotten into his sports activities automobile parked close to Temple Sq. when a bomb underneath his seat exploded, ripping the roof off the auto and propelling him into the road,” the article mentioned.
‘The Most Vital Factor in My Thoughts Was to Preserve From Being Uncovered As a Fraud’ Hofmann Wrote in a Letter to the Parole Board
‘Homicide Among the many Mormons’: TV Overview https://t.co/4HRXTB4jpn
— The Hollywood Reporter (@THR) March 2, 2021
Hofmann wrote a letter to the Utah Board of Pardons and Parole in 1988 saying his greatest concern on the time of the bombings was defending his status, and it was one thing he was prepared to kill for and die to guard.
Hofmann pleaded responsible to 2 counts of aggravated homicide in January 1987, avoiding the loss of life penalty in trade for revealing info on his forgery strategies and on his information of Mormon historical past. Hofmann’s forgeries have been supposed to embarrass The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in hopes of extorting the church for cash. He anticipated the church would wish to hold the pretend paperwork non-public. His first sufferer, Steven Christensen, was a Mormon bishop and doc collector who threatened to reveal the forgeries. Sheets was the spouse of Gary Sheets, Hofmann’s former enterprise affiliate. He referred to as the bomb that killed Sheets “a pure diversion” in his letter.
He had at all times been a prankster, he wrote. Infantile video games aspiring to trick folks fueled the fireplace for what turned the grasp forgery of Mormon paperwork. He wrote that he selected to commit homicide and die in favor of being uncovered, The Salt Lake Metropolis Tribune reported after acquiring his letter in 2011.
“Way back to I can bear in mind I’ve favored to impress folks by way of my deceptions,” he wrote. “Fooling folks gave me a way of energy and superiority. I consider that is what led to my forging actions.”
In the long run, his purpose was to save lots of his status.
“Crucial factor in my thoughts was to maintain from being uncovered as a fraud in entrance of my family and friends,” Hofmann wrote. “Once I say this was crucial factor I imply it actually. I felt I might somewhat take human life and even my very own life somewhat than to be uncovered.”
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