The Lone Wolf

True-crime research, novel writing research, and updates.

***READER DISCRETION IS ADVISED***

 

Robin Lyons, author websiteThe FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force thwarted this “lone wolf’s” plan. However, it’s scary, the time and effort this high school student put into his mass shooting plot.

I know, most parents believe their children aren’t capable of doing bad things. The parents of the children who have carried out evil acts felt the same way. Please, snoop on your children.

Parents need to know what websites and apps their children visit or use. Without the connectivity provided by parents, children wouldn’t have access to terrorist-type people. 

BLOG POST #220: This week, I’m sharing research on a specific crime involving a high school junior.

His classmates knew since he was a freshman that he was a lone wolf type and had converted to Islam. Taking a new faith isn’t a crime. Some students also knew he’d been asking around how to buy guns. Now, this is sounding sketchy.

A small group of classmates submitted a tip to school officials about the teen’s interest in acquiring weapons. After the junior’s arrest, the students reported they didn’t know if anything had transpired as a result of their tip. The boy had continued to attend classes without interruption. Big kudos to those brave teenagers!

He began seriously plotting his attack on Americans in December of his junior year. He’d read a lot about how to please ISIS through an online magazine. There were online chat forums where he found like-minded people. His conversations were mainly with two individuals—an undercover member of the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force and an FBI confidential source.

For six months, the three communicated about the teen’s terrorist plot. He wanted to kill as many Americans as possible. His first thought was to strike his high school. Next, he settled on a mass shooting at a nearby shopping mall.

He spent time at the mall, observing the security guards, their behavior, and their weapons. The communication back and forth between the undercover officer and the student is quite disturbing.

The thought of him, in his bedroom, messaging his two confidants about his plan to kill people while his unsuspecting family is in the other room, makes my heart hurt.

Toward the end of the six-month window of undercover surveillance, the teen sent money to the officer to purchase the weapons and ammunition they’d need.

A spokesperson for the Islamic Association in the county said, “The acts of hate allegedly planned by the teen have no place in any faith.”

Officers arrested him at his home, later he opted to accept a plea agreement and pleaded guilty to solicitation of capital murder and terroristic threat. The federal judge sentenced him to 20 years in federal prison for the solicitation charge and ten years for the terroristic threat to run concurrently.

Worth Mentioning: When asked about the students’ tip, the school spokesperson said she had no information about the tip and couldn’t comment due to privacy laws.

What are your thoughts about this case? Join the conversation on the website. We talk about the sensitive subject of crimes occurring at or connected to schools.

Do you know of a school crime you’d like to share? Email me so we can discuss the details.

Thanks for reading!

-Robin

Source: Collin County Arrest Warrant Affidavit, U.S. Department of Justice, The Dallas Morning News

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