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Feds bust Oklahoma man for attempt to detonate car bomb blocks from 1995 Oklahoma City bombing

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Jerry Drake Varnell of Sayre, Oklahoma was arrested Saturday morning when he was found to be attempting to detonate what he believed was a van filled with explosives parked in an alley next to the BancFirst building, according to KOCO News.

The BancFirst building is located at 101 N. Broadway, and is two blocks from the southeast corner of the Oklahoma Bombing Memorial complex where the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building once stood. American terrorist Timothy McVeigh was convicted of blowing up the building in 1995, killing 168 people including 19 children and babies in the daycare center on the second floor.

A criminal complaint was filed in the Western District of Oklahoma Sunday that revealed the FBI arrested 23-year-old Varnell at 1 a.m. The man initially hoped to blow up the Federal Reserve Building in Washington, D.C. using a similar device that McVeigh used. His intentions came to the attention of law enforcement when an undercover FBI agent posed as someone trying to assist him in the effort.

Varnell took many steps to advance the plot, the complaint alleges. He identified BancFirst as the target, prepared a social media statement to be posted after the explosion, he helped assemble the device and load it into what he thought was a “stolen van.” He then picked up the van from an El Reno location and drove it to the BancFirst building in Oklahoma City and dialed the cell phone number that would trigger the explosion.

He’s charged with attempting to use explosives to destroy a building in interstate commerce and he faces 20 years in prison if convicted. Mandatory minimum sentence puts him in jail for at least five years. He’ll appear in court at 3 p.m. Monday.

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“There was never a concern that our community’s safety or security was at risk during this investigation,” said Special Agent in Charge Kathryn Peterson of the FBI. “I can assure the public, without hesitation, that we had Varnell’s actions monitored every step of the way.”

The arrest is the culmination of an ongoing domestic terrorism investigation that involves undercover officers. Varnell had been monitored closely for months as the plot unfolded. The device was never one that would explode or kill anyone. The public was safe at all times, law enforcement said.

Varnell was a follower of the Three Percenter ideology, according to the Washington Post. The so-called patriot group pledges resistance against the United States, believing the government has breached the Constitution. They believe only three percent of the colonial population participated in the American Revolution and think that they are the rightful heirs.

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“We are NOT a militia,” the about section of their website claims. One of their four principles claims there will be “No Targeting of Innocents,” which might be why Varnell attempted to blow up the building after hours on Friday. They heavily support the Second Amendment. The group was founded in 2008 by former Alabama militiaman Mike Vanderboegh and is often associated with the Oath Keepers.


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Cop says Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez should be shot following Trump’s racist targeting of The Squad

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Following racist attacks on members of The Squad by President Donald Trump and his supporters, a police officer in Louisiana reportedly said that one of the congresswomen of color should be shot.

Trump has been lashing out at the four first-term congresswomen, who include Representatives Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), Ilhan Omar (D-MN), Ayanna Pressley (D-MA), and Rashida Tlaib (D-MI).

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Internet piles on ABC reporter for lavishing praise on Trump for allowing press to ask questions

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ABC News reporter Kyra Phillips on Saturday heaped praise on President Donald Trump for his treatment of the press.

Despite the White House no longer holding daily press briefings, Phillips praised the "access" she receives from the administration.

"No matter what your politics are, I have to say that I appreciate the access ?Trump? gives us on a regular basis and the ability to ask any question," she said.

She tagged Stephanie Grisham in her tweet, who is Trump's latest press secretary. She also tagged her husband, John Roberts, who does not work in the White House, but works for Fox News.

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The real problem wasn’t the racism — it was the Trump taking ‘the Lord’s name in vain’ twice: supporter

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President Donald Trump was widely condemned after supporters at a campaign rally in West Virginia turned his racist "go back" message into a "Send Her Back" chant against one of a woman of color in Congress.

One Trump supporter in West Virginia also criticized the speech, but not for the racist targeting of Rep. Ilhan Omar.

State Senator Paul Hardesty, a Democrat, wrote to the White House to complain about Trump's use of the word "goddamn."

The letter was republished by the Montgomery-Herald.

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