Six men have been charged as part of a militia plot to kidnap Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer, who was repeatedly attacked by President Donald Trump this year for her tough coronavirus lockdown, according to court records released on Thursday.
A sworn affidavit from an FBI agent detailed the outlines of the plot which was thwarted by law enforcement.
The FBI said it became aware through social media in early 2020 “that a group of individuals were discussing the violent overthrow of certain government and law-enforcement components.”
It said a confidential informant attended a meeting in June of around 14 people where the group “talked about creating a society that followed the US Bill of Rights and where they could be self-sufficient.
“They discussed different ways of achieving this goal from peaceful endeavours to violent actions,” the affidavit said.
“Several members talked about murdering ‘tyrants’ or ‘taking’ a sitting governor,” it said.
Target of criticism
Whitmer has been the target of criticism by Trump over the Covid-19 lockdown in the state and there have been demonstrations in the state by right-wing groups demanding it be lifted.
The six men charged with conspiring to kidnap Whitmer were identified as Adam Fox, Barry Croft, Ty Garbin, Kaleb Franks, Daniel Harris, and Brandon Caserta.
Croft is a resident of Delaware while the other five are residents of Michigan.
The affidavit said that Fox was recorded in June saying he needed 200 men to “storm the Capitol building in Lansing, Michigan, and take hostages, including the Governor.”
“Fox explained they would try the Governor of Michigan for ‘treason,’ and he said they would execute the plan before the November 2020 elections,” the affidavit said.
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