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FBI agent shot by loaded wheelchair in booby trapped home

FBI-JTTF bomb threat training exercise featuring Joint Terrorism Task Force jacket. (Federal Bureau of Investigations)
October 03, 2018

On Sept. 7, the FBI and state police bomb technicians responded to a request at a rural home in Williams, Oregon but when they arrived they soon discovered that the home had multiple booby traps set, one of which injured an FBI agent.

According to court records, the request was made by real estate attorney, Joseph Charter, who was assigned to sell the 15-acre property in Josephine County, Fox News reported.

Charter called police on August 29 after seeing warning signs posted across Rodvelt’s property that the home was “protected with improvised devices.”

Authorities arrived ten days after Charter made the call to police and said, “[It was] much like a scene from the movie ‘Indiana Jones – Raiders of the Lost Ark’ in which actor Harrison Ford is forced to outrun a giant stone boulder that he inadvertently triggered by a booby trap switch.”

The home was formerly owned by 66-year-old Gregory Rodvelt who lost the home off Dreamhill Drive when he was charged in an elder abuse case in 2016. He was sued by his 90-years-old mother and her caretaker, resulting in a judgment of more than $2 million against Rodvelt. He was arrested in 2017 just outside of Phoenix, but authorities gave him a two-week furlough in August to get his affairs in order to surrender his property, The Oregonian reported.

Amongst the many trip wires set up by Rodvelt across the property was an old hot tub by the property’s entrance gate lying on its side and designed with fishing line to roll down the hill and trample anyone who tripped the wire. Rodvelt also placed spike strips across the edge of the driveway.

He also set a trigger on his garage door with a rat trap that would send a blast of bullets from a shotgun, if opened. There was also a minivan with spring-loaded animal snares just waiting to be triggered. Police cleverly made it past those traps safely.

Once inside the home, however, there was a wheelchair in the hallway, and when it was carefully moved out of the way, it released a barrage of bullets, hitting one agent.

The agent screamed, “I’m hit!”

After the agent was rushed to the hospital, an x-ray revealed a .410-gauge shotgun pellet in the wounded agent’s left leg.

Rodvelt was arrested and charged with a felony count of assault on a federal officer. He already faces pending charges from his previous arrest, which include aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, resisting arrest, and failure to mark explosives, according to court records.