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Man charged with murder in shooting, bombing attack at Minnesota clinic

(Reuters) - A Minnesota man accused of shooting several people and bombing a health clinic he had threatened over a grievance related to a back surgery was charged with murder and attempted murder in court on Thursday, according to police and local media.

Police said Gregory Paul Ulrich, 67, used a handgun to shoot five people at the Allina Health Clinic in Buffalo, Minnesota, on Tuesday, killing one. He also brought three homemade bombs with him and managed to explode two of them, damaging the building, they said.

Local media reported that Ulrich had threatened at least one Allina doctor in 2018 in a dispute over surgery on his back, and that a judge had issued a restraining order against Ulrich. Police said Ulrich was believed to hold a grievance against someone at the clinic, in a small city about 35 miles (55 km) northwest of Minneapolis, but declined to share more details.

After being arrested at the clinic, he told police he left his cellphone there, which contained “a rambling video message that alluded to an incident at the clinic,” according to a criminal complaint filed in the Wright County District Courthouse in Buffalo.

Ulrich used a wheelchair in a virtual appearance from jail on Thursday morning before state District Court Judge Catherine McPherson, the Star Tribune newspaper in Minneapolis reported. He did not enter a plea and told the judge he did not wish to say anything, the newspaper reported. Neither Ulrich nor his attorney could immediately be reached for comment.

He is charged with one count of murder in the second degree, four counts attempted murder in the first degree and two charges related to his use of explosive devices and carrying a gun without a permit.

Buffalo police told reporters this week that Ulrich was well known to the department, but few details were released as to the nature of his alleged grievance with the clinic.

Three of the surviving victims remained hospitalized, according to the criminal complaint, while the fourth person was due to return to the hospital for surgery to remove bullets from their leg.

Reporting by Jonathan Allen in New York; Editing by David Gregorio