The FBI thwarted what they described as a plot to violently overthrow the government and kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and federal prosecutors are expected to discuss the alleged conspiracy later Thursday.
The alleged plot involved reaching out to members of a Michigan militia, according to a federal affidavit filed Thursday, October 8, 2020.
“Several members talked about murdering ‘tyrants’ or ‘taking’ a sitting governor,” an FBI agent wrote in the affidavit. “The group decided they needed to increase their numbers and encouraged each other to talk to their neighbors and spread their message.”
The affidavit was filed hours after a team of FBI agents raided a Hartland Township home Wednesday and comes amid an ongoing investigation into the death of a Metro Detroit man killed during a shootout with FBI agents.
In recent weeks, the state-owned Michigan governor’s residence received security upgrades, including the construction of a new perimeter fence.
The “perimeter security and other safety upgrades” were planned out last year, Whitmer spokeswoman Tiffany Brown said in early September. They were scheduled to start in the early spring but were delayed until recently because of the pandemic, she said.
The cost for the “maintenance” projects at the Lansing residence, which was recommended by the Michigan State Police and the state Department of Technology, Management, and Budget, was about $1.1 million, Brown said.
“As a matter of practice, we’re constantly reviewing security protocols and adjusting as needed,” said Shanon Banner, spokeswoman for the Michigan State Police, in early September. “We don’t comment on specific threats against the governor nor do we provide information about security measures.”