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Cleveland man found guilty for attempting to kidnap and ambush law enforcement officers

A Cleveland man trying to grow a militia movement has been found guilty of an attempted plot to kidnap and ambush law enforcement officers responding to a false distress call in order to start an uprising.

Acting U.S. Attorney Bridget M. Brennan announced that a federal jury found Christian Ferguson, 21, of Cleveland, Ohio, guilty of two counts of attempted kidnapping. Ferguson was arrested for plotting to kidnap and kill officers to draw attention to his up-start militia, called “75th Spartans,” and to steal officers’ weapons and equipment. Attorney Brennan went onto say “Mr. Ferguson devised a plan, and took steps to see it through, that involved placing a fake distress call to lure responding officers to the scene so that he could violently attack them, steal their department-issued weapons and equipment, and incite various militias to similarly attempt to overthrow the U.S. government and its institutions.”

“Exploiting first responders’ most solemn obligation – to protect and serve – as a way of luring them into a violent ambush and inciting violence against our democratic institutions was cowardly, heinous, and, as Mr. Ferguson’s jury determined today, criminal.  The community members who reported this plan, and the federal agents who worked to prevent it, should be commended for their actions.  Lives were saved.” FBI Special Agent in Charge Eric B. Smith called Ferguson’s intentions ‘cowardly’ and ‘despicable’. “Christian Ferguson’s plan was to lure law enforcement to a remote location then murder as many as he could in hopes of starting an ‘uprising.’

In a March 21 message, Ferguson reportedly wrote: “If we can keep 1 or 2 alive to get answers great but it’s not an objective.” The probe discovered that Ferguson was plotting to lure officers with false in-progress calls to remote areas where they could be robbed of their weapons and ballistic vests, and possibly killed. According to a statement issued by the Department of Justice (DOJ):

“In March of 2020, Ferguson further discussed this plot in the chatroom in greater detail.  Specifically, Ferguson’s discussed purchasing high-powered firearms, creating homemade chemical weapons, and leaving a “calling card” to promote media attention to his intended uprising. 

Based on their investigation, federal authorities planted a “confidential human source” into the chatroom controlled by Ferguson. The plot grew, and Ferguson met with several “confidential human sources” on several occasions to discuss his plan and move toward action. Ferguson engaged in practice drills with an AR-15 rifle and conducted reconnaissance in a “dry run” in preparation for carrying out his plot against officers, according to the DOJ. Ferguson is scheduled for sentencing on August 27, 2021.

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ARTICLE: PAUL MURDOCH

POLITICS EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE

PHOTO CREDITS: CLEVELAND.COM

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