UPDATED 10/8/20, 10:15 p.m. ET: A total of 13 men have been charged for their involvement in the alleged plot to kidnap Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer, NBC News reports. According to state prosecutors, they have all been charged with "providing material support for terrorist acts" and "carrying or possessing a firearm during the commission of a felony."
Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel said that the initial six men who were charged were part of the Wolverine Watchmen militia that looked to "instigate a civil war" and had "engaged in planning and training for an operation to attack the Capitol building of Michigan and to kidnap government officials, including the governor of Michigan."
The seven other suspects were identified as Paul Bellar, Eric Molitor, Shawn Fix, Joseph Morrison, Pete Musico, Michael Null, and William Null.
Gov. Whitmer addressed the thwarted kidnapping plot earlier today, criticizing Trump's failure to condemn white supremacy at the first presidential debate. Whitmer believes Trump's "stand back and stand by" response served as a rallying cry to militia groups, like the Wolverine Watchmen.
"Just last week the president of the United States stood before the American people and refused to condemn white supremacists and hate groups like these two Michigan militia groups," she said. "'Stand back and stand by,' he told them … hate groups heard the president’s words not as a rebuke but as a rallying cry, as a call to action."
See original story below.
The plan, according to a report filed on Thursday by the Detroit News' Robert Snell, is said to have seen those involved reaching out to militia members.
"Several members talked about murdering 'tyrants' or 'taking' a sitting governor," an FBI agent said in an affidavit that was filed in the hours after the agency raided a home in Hartland Township as part of the investigation into the death of a Detroit man who was killed during an FBI shootout.
Six men are said to be charged with conspiring to kidnap the governor. One of them, 24-year-old Ty Garbin, is said to be the same man whose home was raided on Wednesday.
Six men were charged in federal court with conspiring to kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer in reaction to what they viewed as her “uncontrolled power,” according to a federal complaint. https://t.co/SRKtiNp1KE— fox8news (@fox8news) October 8, 2020
According to a court ruling, the FBI said four of the men planned to meet on Wednesday to "make a payment on explosives and exchange tactical gear."
As news of the thwarted plot broke on Thursday, many were quick to point out a Trump tweet from April in which he said "LIBERATE MICHIGAN!"
Eric Allport was fatally shot during a recent attempted arrest in connection with a federal weapons offense. Allport, as Tess Owen explains at length in this investigative Vice piece from earlier this week, has since been turned into a "new martyr" for the so-called Boogaloo Bois. The Southern Poverty Law Center notes that those who choose to align themselves with the group are "bound together predominantly" by a desire to "mount an armed insurrection against the government."
Thursday's report did not immediately identify the specific "militia group" that the FBI had been tracking since March. An account of a meeting including people "from multiple states" was held in June, with discussions being captured via secret recording methods by a confidential source for the agency.
Others named in the affidavit include Barry Croft, Adam Fox, Kaleb Franks, Daniel Harris, and Brandon Caserta.