Chinese man known for erratic anti-American posts blows up house in Virginia

ARLINGTON, VA – A Virginia resident known for his erratic social media activity and history of baseless lawsuits has been connected to a house explosion that occurred in Arlington on Monday night. The explosion took place after the police were called to investigate reports of someone shooting flares into the neighborhood from the house.

The man, identified as 56-year-old James Yoo, is believed to have been living in the duplex that was caught on video exploding. The police confirmed his identity during a press briefing on Tuesday afternoon, stating that human remains had been found at the site, which are presumed to be Yoo’s. However, an autopsy is still underway.

Yoo’s past interactions with the police at the address were limited to a couple of noise complaints over the past few years. Despite his LinkedIn profile being disabled, some of his posts and silent videos depicting court filings from his unsuccessful lawsuits were preserved on a YouTube page. Two videos displaying his recent LinkedIn posts were removed on Tuesday morning. At the briefing, the police acknowledged awareness of his disturbing social media activity.

Yoo’s posts often included derogatory comments about his ex-wife, anti-American sentiments, and quotes from Noam Chomsky. He claimed to be a former head of information and physical security for an international telecommunications company in his profile description.

Alex Wilson, a neighbor who filmed the explosion, described Yoo as a hermit who had covered his windows with aluminum foil. In his social media posts, Yoo often ranted about his neighbors and claimed to be the target of “hateful messaging.”

In February last year, Yoo attempted to sue his ex-wife, the state of New York, and over a dozen others on various charges including fraud and conspiracy to deprive him of civil rights. A federal judge dismissed the complaint two months later, labeling it as “frivolous and confused.” This was one of many similar complaints that were also dismissed.

The explosion occurred as law enforcement was approaching the house. The blast was so powerful it set off car alarms in the neighborhood. Police initially responded to the house after reports of someone inside firing multiple rounds from a flare gun into the surrounding area.

The police tried to establish contact through phone calls and loudspeakers but were unsuccessful. Three officers sustained minor injuries in the explosion, but none required hospitalization. The blast affected 10 households, and the neighbors in the adjoining unit were evacuated before the explosion.