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Why 3rd Bomb Wasn’t Suicide Attempt (Part 6 of 13)

In the recent Netflix documentary, “Murder Among the Mormons,” Mark Hofmann is heard on a prison recording that he was trying to commit suicide with the 3rd bomb.  However, police reports indicate the 3rd bomb blast was a mistake.  Brent Ashworth tells why he thinks the 3rd blast was an accident.

GT:  Let me just set that up. Because Shannon Flynn when I interviewed him, he said that he thought that it was a suicide attempt. And we did hear a prison recording where Mark said it was a suicide attempt, but George Throckmorton, and the ATF basically knew when that bomb went off, they knew immediately, number one, that Mark was the bomber. And number two, they said it was an accident. So help us help us resolve that conflict.

Brent: But anyway, the point was, is that they sent [ATF agent] Jerry Taylor and Mark was still in the hospital coming out of his coma or whatever. He blew his kneecap and a couple of fingers off. And Jerry said, “I want to be the first to ask him questions.” So they did. They brought him up. And when Mark came to, [Jerry] just asked him, “What happened?”

Brent: Mark said, “Well, I got to my car.” And it was a little MR2. We’d sat on there several times to do deals as I told you before. And he opens the door and he says, “This package fell off the dashboard and onto the seat and blew me into the street.” Well, that’s not what the eyewitnesses said either. The eyewitnesses said that they saw this man get partway into the [car.] He was sitting on the seat with his right hip. Both feet were still on the pavement. Here’s what the eyewitnesses said. He was leaning into the car when the thing blew up.

GT:  To put it in the backseat or something?

Brent: Yeah. In the process George said that he hit the the gearshift which set the mercury switch off. It was mercury switch activated.

GT:  All he had to do was tip the package.

Brent: All he had to do was tip it. He hit the gear shift. It was right in his way, moving the thing to the back. I mean it was very little room to work in and he hit the gear shift and that set the bomb off. He was blown into the street. If he’d had the door shut, if he was trying to commit suicide, he would have been killed. But he wasn’t tryng to commit suicide. In fact, the eyewitnesses said he couldn’t figure out what he was leaning into the car with. He’s trying to stay as far away from it as he could. But he hit the gearshift.

GT:  I would think he’d put it in the trunk. But I know there were important documents in the in the trunk.

Brent: Well, I was mostly just junk he put in there to make look like a McLellin Collection. You know what? They showed me a lot of that stuff and most of it was Civil War documents of General McClellan. I mean, he’s a pretty smart guy. But General McClellan didn’t spell his name the same way as William McLellin.

How did a Civil War general get mixed up in this?  Check out our conversation….

Why 3rd Bomb Wasn’t Suicide Attempt (Part 6 of 13)
Evidence at the scene indicates the 3rd bomb blast was an accident, not a suicide attempt by Mark Hofmann.
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McLellin Collection Offers (Part 5 of 13)

Mark Hofmann was trying to sell the McLellin collection to the LDS Church and Al Rust at the time the bombs exploded in 1985.  It turns out they weren’t the only offers.  Brent Ashworth tells us that the collection was offered to him as well!

GT:  Steve [Christensen] was trying to get the McLellin Collection for the Church. Right?

Brent:  Right.

GT:  And so he was saying, “Look. Hugh Pinnock has already giving you $185,000. We need the McLellin Collection. We need it now.”

Brent:  Mark was also offering the collection to me, and that part’s never really been discussed. But he was offering the collection to me. I know he offered at least parts of it to Curt [Bench] too, like Facsimile One, Facsimile Two. I think we got up to Facsimile Three at one point, that he was willing to [sell.] These were all in the McLellin Collection. See, McLellin, when he left the church, Joseph Smith wrote a couple of things in his history: one of them that is important, I think. One of them is “That old apostate,” I’m paraphrasing Joseph’s history. “That old apostate McLellin, I heard ransacked my office and stole some my papers.” So there you’ve got the McLellin Collection right in the prophet’s own words, basically.

GT:  Yeah, we don’t know what’s in it, but McLellin….

Brent:  We don’t know what’s in it, but Hofmann will supply that, right? I asked Mark. I said, “What’s in the McLellin Collection?” when he offered it to me. And he says, “Oh, there’s six little journals/diaries that go from this year to this year. There’s a lot of really damaging stuff about the Prophet Joseph Smith, and there were other things.” Obviously, the McLellin Collection started out as the Texas Collection when I first met him. He had already kind of devised this idea that there’s got to be a wastebasket collection where everything comes from I think, before he even met me. Do you know what I mean? And that was 1981 and the Texas Collection, it was talked about by Mark several times with me and I’m sure others. It became the McLellin Collection.

Check out our conversation….

McLellin Collection Offers (Part 5 of 13)
The McLellin Collection was supposed to contain Egyptian papyri stolen from Joseph Smith by early apostle William McLellin.

Don’t miss our previous conversations with Brent!

504: Lucy Mack Smith Forgery

503: Mark’s Unknown Half Million$ Deal

502: Hiding from Hofmann

501: Meeting Serial Killers


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Bonus: Ask Me Anything March 26

Now is your chance!  I will be available on Reddit for an AMA (Ask Me Anything) starting at 10 am on March 26, 2021.  Sign up at to get your questions in.  I will be available that day to answer your questions!