PUBLISHED: December 22, 2017 at 12:44 pm
SAN FRANCISCO — A Modesto man who is a Marine-trained sharpshooter is accused of helming a Christmas Day plot to detonate explosives and unleash a hail of bullets at Pier 39 — a scheme that was thwarted by undercover FBI agents who feigned sympathy to his ISIS leanings.
Everitt Aaron Jameson, 26, was arrested Friday and charged in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California with attempting to provide material support to a foreign terrorist organization. He was arraigned in
Fresno, but did not enter a plea.
“Today, our incredible law enforcement officers have once again helped thwart an alleged plot to kill Americans,” U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions said in a statement. “The threat from radical Islamic terrorism is real — and it is serious — but the American people can be assured that the Department of Justice remains vigilant in protecting our homeland.”
According to a criminal complaint, Jameson was identified as an ISIS supporter in September based on his social-media activity, which was brought to authorities’ attention by an agency informant. From that point, FBI agents posing as terrorist sympathizers began routinely communicating with Jameson to draw out his possible intentions for mass violence.
Jameson offered his wages, his vehicle access as a tow truck driver, and his military experience — he trained as a sharpshooter with the U.S. Marine Corps but was discharged shortly after completing basic training for not disclosing an asthma condition — as resources for an attack in San Francisco, the FBI asserts.
While in communication with the undercover agents, Jameson reportedly expressed admiration for the 2015 San Bernardino mass shooting, and the Oct. 31 terror attack in New York City in which a driver drove a box truck through a busy pedestrian and bicycle pathway in Lower Manhattan, killing eight people.
Jameson’s alleged plan for the San Francisco attack was to set off pipe bombs at the pier to “funnel” fleeing people into an area where he would be waiting to shoot them with an assault rifle, the complaint states. He reportedly described Christmas as “the perfect day” for an attack and also expressed willingness to sacrifice his life for the cause.
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