Madera man gets five years in prison for arson, vandalism

FRESNO, Calif.

/*Donny Mower*/ who drove a school bus in Chowchilla pleaded guilty in October in federal court. Mower's family says the 38 year-old deserves the time he will spend in prison. "He is guilty of that. He is a young man that is mentally ill and acted out on ideas in his head that are false and wrong," said his stepfather, Jeff Ratley.

Mower admitted to throwing a Molotov cocktail through the ground floor window of the Madera Planned Parenthood Clinic. The fire forced the clinic to close for two days and caused $26,000 in damages. Planned Parenthood staff members say the sentencing gives them a sense of closure. "It sort of provided safety for us and our staff and our patients. We can finally move on from this point on, "said the organization's Pedro Elias.

Mower will also serve time for throwing a brick at a Madera mosque in 2010 and leaving signs that read, "Wake up America, The enemy is here." A spokesperson for the mosque says members are still recovering from Mower's actions. Mohamed Ali of the Sacramento Valley Chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-SV) spoke on behalf of the Madera Muslim community , "The shock that set in after it happened forced people to think it could happen at any time when they are praying."

Mower's family tells Actions News he has been diagnosed with bipolar disorder. Mower will get credit for the nine months he has spent in prison. Once he is released from prison he will be under probation for three years. Mower will also be required to pay for the damages he caused to Planned Parenthood.

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