In October, a Missouri man was arrested after he was found tampering with the brakes of an Amtrak train in Nebraska:
An armed man was arrested after police say he pulled the brakes on an Amtrak train headed east near Oxford on Saturday.
Police say Taylor M. Wilson was carrying a loaded revolver in his waistband and a speed loader in his pocket this weekend.
The Amtrak train was preparing to make a stop in Holdrege when police say 25 year–old Taylor Wilson got into the second locomotive and pulled the brakes in Furnas County.
Besides a Smith and Wesson revolver, police say Wilson also had a box of ammo, a knife, tin snips, scissors and a ventilation mask. There were also three more speed loaders in his bags. One passenger says the Assistant Conductor had just awoken the cabin to tell them they were making their stop in Holdrege, when the train suddenly stopped.
The FBI has now unsealed documents relating to the case and revealed the Missouri man is facing terrorism charges:
Taylor Michael Wilson, of St. Charles, Missouri, is charged in U.S. District Court in Lincoln with terrorism attacks and other violence against railroad carriers and mass transportation systems.
In an affidavit attached to the criminal complaint, FBI Special Agent Monte Czaplewski said there was probable cause to believe that electronic devices possessed by Wilson and firearms owned by him “have been used for or obtained in anticipation of engaging in or planning to engage in criminal offenses against the United States.”
When federal agents searched his home, they found a small arsenal and neo-Nazi materials, including evidence Wilson had attended the Charlottesville white supremacy rally:
Two days later, according to the federal case, FBI agents searched Wilson’s home in Missouri and found a hidden compartment with a handmade shield, as well as: “a tactical vest, 11 AR-15 (rifle) ammunition magazines with approximately 190 rounds of .223 ammunition, one drum-style ammunition magazine for a rifle, firearms tactical accessories (lights), 100 rounds of 9 mm ammunition, approximately 840 rounds of 5.45×39 rifle ammunition, white supremacy documents and paperwork, several additional handgun and rifle magazines, gunpowder, ammunition-reloading supplies, and a pressure plate.”
Czaplewski said they also found 15 firearms, including a fully-automatic rifle, ammunition and firearms magazines, and a tactical body armor carrier with ceramic ballistic plates.
An informant told the FBI that Wilson has expressed an interest in “killing black people” and others besides whites, and they suspect Wilson was responsible for a road rage incident in April 2016 in St. Charles where a man pointed a gun at a black woman for no apparent reason while driving on Interstate 70, Czaplewski said.
In a 2015 terror threat assessment from the Triangle Center on Terrorism and Homeland Security, anti-government extremists were listed as the most severe threat:
Law enforcement agencies in the United States consider anti-government violent extremists, not radicalized Muslims, to be the most severe threat of political violence that they face.
They perceive violent extremism to be a much more severe threat nationally than thethreat of violent extremism in their own jurisdictions.
Unfortunately for all of us, Donald Trump and his enablers don’t seem to be taking these types of threats seriously. In fact, one of his first acts as president was to slash funding for programs that helped rightwing extremists leave the lifestyle. So, what will it take to truly combat these rightwing, anti-government extremists? The best start would be a new occupant in the White House and an administration that takes these threats seriously.