Michigan governor not only original target of militia group according to feds

CHICAGO (WLS) -- The roots of the plan to kill Michigan's governor were much deeper than just one governor, according to federal authorities.

Gretchen Whitmer and the people who protect and surround Michigan's governor were on the final target list, according to newly filed federal court records.

The accused militia leader is allegedly heard on tape: "They're going to die. Period." But new information indicates Whitmer, her security and aides were not the only original targets

READ MORE: 13 charged in plot to kidnap Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer: FBI
In the early planning and training stages for the attack, federal agents say radical militiamen were not set on a specific target.

A newly filed court record suggests a much broader target list, with accused ringleader Adam Fox quoted as saying, "We need to get these (blanking) governors and arrest them and put 'em on trial for their crimes and their violations of the Constitution."

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Authorities suspect the original plan was to kidnap numerous liberal governors who were seen by the militia group as going too far in cracking down on COVID, then early in the pandemic.

But as the alleged plot progressed, the core group of more than a dozen militia operatives zeroed in on Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, according to U.S. authorities. They allegedly put her summer home in northern Michigan under surveillance; had a plan to blow up the bridge near her family's home.

SEE MORE: Training video in alleged kidnapping plot of Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer released
Investigators now say a sniper team armed with high powered rifles and infrared scopes would be positioned to take down the governor's security detail before kidnapping her.

According to a new court record, the chilling words alleged from Fox: that they "want to have the governor hog-tied, laid out on a table while we all pose around like we just made the world's biggest drug bust, bro."

MORE: Michigan governor kidnap plot dreamt up by FBI informants, accused leader claims

The plot was never carried out, interrupted by FBI agents, and some federal operatives who were working undercover inside the militia.

Fox and many of the other accused in the alleged plot have pleaded not guilty to conspiracy, kidnapping and weapons of mass destruction charges. They contend this case was a lot of boasting and tough talk; and that they were entrapped by undercover agents.

Not buying that, a federal judge in western Michigan this week denied their motion to dismiss the charges. The trial is currently set for March 8.
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