Judge: Ex-Marine can’t withdraw guilty plea in Ohio mosque fire allegedly set for vengeance

TOLEDO, Ohio — A former Marine who admitted setting fire to an Ohio mosque because he wanted revenge for the killings of American troops overseas won’t be allowed to withdraw his guilty plea, a judge ruled Thursday.

Randy Linn had asked to take back his admission to hate crime charges in January, a month after he explained in detail how he drove from his Indiana home to the suburban Toledo mosque and burned a prayer rug, causing extensive damage in the building.

Linn, 52, said he was in an emotional and depressed state when he pleaded guilty. His attorney asked the judge to throw out the plea so Linn could undergo a competency exam.

U.S. District Judge Jack Zouhary rejected the request, saying there was nothing indicating Linn was a candidate for an insanity plea and that he clearly was competent when he pleaded guilty in December.