Musab Masmari yesterday pleaded not guilty to a single count of arson in the New Year’s Eve fire at a Seattle gay nightclub.
Musmari, 30, is being held in the King County Jail. A hearing in the case has been set for March 5th. Musmari was also ordered to have no contact with Neighbours or its employees. A judge had previously set Musmari’s bail at $1 million after prosecutors said he posed a flight risk. Musmari was found with a one-way ticket to Turkey and two passports when police arrested him in January. Musmari also has several other ongoing cases unrelated to the incident at Neighbours. Earlier, CHS documented Musmari’s increased brushes with the law in the past year on Capitol Hill including assaults and protection order violations. In a recent conviction and sentence that he is appealing, Musmari was required to undergo a mental health evaluation.
Masmari allegedly told a police informant that “homosexuals should be exterminated.” That revelation has spawned speculation that federal hate crime charges are coming.