Six Named in Plot to Kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer over COVID Lockdown

Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer gestures as she welcomes Joe Biden during his campaign stop at Cherry Health clinic in Grand Rapids, Michigan, March 9, 2020. (Brendan McDermid/Reuters)

The FBI has revealed that it exposed a plot to kidnap Michigan governor Gretchen Whitmer and overthrow the state government, in part because of the governor’s lockdown policies.

The agency filed an affidavit on Thursday recommending that six people be charged in the conspiracy, the Detroit News reported. Those people attempted to contact an unnamed militia in Michigan, and discussed killing government officials and police officers.

The group included Adam Fox, Barry Croft, Ty Garbin, Kaleb Franks, Daniel Harris, and Brandon Caserta. Ages and places of residence were not immediately available for the members. However, on Wednesday FBI agents raided Garbin’s home in Hartland, Mich.

“Several members talked about murdering ‘tyrants’ or ‘taking’ a sitting governor,” an FBI agent commented in the affidavit. “The group talked about creating a society that followed the U.S. Bill of Rights and where they could be self-sufficient….At one point, several members talked about state governments they believed were violating the U.S. Constitution, including the government of Michigan and Governor Gretchen Whitmer.” Group member Adam Fox “referred to Governor Whitmer as ‘this tyrant b—-.’”

After members of the group reached out to the militia, one member of the militia “was concerned about the group’s plans to target and kill police officers, and that person agreed to become a [confidential source].”

After the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, Governor Whitmer instituted some of the strictest lockdown orders in the country, which included banning the sale of paint, garden equipment, and furniture. Dozens of anti-lockdown demonstrators descended on the Michigan Capitol in early May, many of them carrying firearms and intimidating state lawmakers.

Later on, after George Floyd demonstrations spread across the country, Whitmer violated her own executive order on social distancing in order to march with protesters.

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Zachary Evans is a news writer for National Review Online. He is a veteran of the Israeli Defense Forces and a trained violist.

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