Associated PressNews

Prosecutor: Kansas militia members wanted to kill Muslims

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — Three militia members plotted to bomb a Kansas mosque and apartment complex housing Somali immigrants to kill as many Muslims as possible, a federal prosecutor said Thursday.

In her opening statement at their trial, Risa Berkower told jurors that the three men described the Somalis as “cockroaches” and planned to carry out an attack in the meatpacking town of Garden City, Kansas, about 220 miles (350 kilometers) west of Wichita, until a fourth man revealed their plot to the FBI and authorities arrested them.

Patrick Stein, Gavin Wright and Curtis Allen have pleaded not guilty to several charges, including conspiracy to use a weapon of mass destruction.

A militia member tipped off federal authorities after becoming alarmed by the escalating talk of violence, prosecutors have said. The man later agreed to wear a wire as a paid informant. The government’s case features months of profanity-laced recordings in which militia members discussed plans.

According to prosecutors, Stein was recorded discussing the type of fuel and fertilizer bomb that Timothy McVeigh used in the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing, which killed 168 people. Stein was arrested when he delivered 300 pounds (135 kilograms) of fertilizer to undercover FBI agents to make explosives.

Attorneys for the three men are expected to make their opening statements later Thursday.

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Joel Rodgers

Joel Rodgers joined RSHV News 1 in January 2018 as a reporter/journalist. Prior to joining our team, Joel spent the previous 5 years as a morning show reporter, entertainment reporter, and sports reporter for a local television station. At 6’5”, he's the tallest reporter in the history of Shreveport, but it’s more than just his height that makes this Shreveport native stand out. His editing skills combined with his love for storytelling makes for a creative and talented addition to the RSHV News 1 team. After attending and graduating from Evangel Christian Academy, he earned his Bachelor’s degree in Broadcast Journalism from Northwestern State University. Joel is very active in the Shreveport community having won several competitions in recent years. In 2017, he danced his way to victory in the annual Susan G. Komen event, “Dancing for the Cure." He’s also won the “Mudbug Madness” Crawfish eating contest in back-to-back years and was named the top celebrity chef at the “Louisiana Food Prize” cooking competition. If you have a story idea, news tip, or just want to say "hey" - you can do so by emailing Joel Rodgers at jrodgers@realshreveport.com
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