Apparently, while I was sleeping, they turned my local sheriff’s department into a staging center for FBI raids against a Christian-focused militia group less then 40 miles away.
The FBI conducted raids Saturday night in Washtenaw County and Lenawee County in an investigation involving members of Hutaree, a Christian-oriented militia group based in Lenawee County, AnnArbor.com has learned.
The nature of those raids has not been made public. FBI Special Agent Jason Pack, who is based in Washington, D.C., said he did not know how many people were taken into custody. Gina Balaya, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Detroit, could not be reached for comment today.
“I can confirm that there is ongoing law enforcement activity in the Ann Arbor general area,” Pack said in a written statement. “Since the federal warrants are under court ordered seal, legally we cannot provide further comment at this time.”
Local Michigan militia member Jimmy Schiel said he was told five people were arrested – including one known member of Hutaree. Schiel said the five were reportedly arrested during a raid at a service in the Ann Arbor area for a Hutaree member who died recently.
Apparently, this raid is connected with a raid in Indiana …
Hammond police assisted with an FBI raid Saturday evening in the Indiana city, but federal officials would not release any details.
Hammond officials did not know the circumstances surrounding the raid, which began about 7 p.m. and lasted two hours, said a police dispatcher.
And in Ohio…
A battalion of local officers and federal agents flooded the Bayshore Estates neighborhood Saturday afternoon.
A second raid was conducted in Huron. An FBI agent at the scene of the Bayshore Estates raid said a second, related raid was taking place at “another location.” Huron police confirmed late Saturday a raid had taken place in that city, but would say nothing more.
Likewise, FBI agents at the scene and at the Cleveland field office are staying mum on the cause of the commotion.
“We did make some arrests,” said special agent Scott Wilson of the FBI’s Cleveland office.
What was it we’ve been talking about, whether coordinated actions of white Americans could be terrorism or not?
Here’s an update–looks like they were worried about anti-Islamic violence.
Lackomar said he heard from other militia members that the FBI targeted the Hutaree after its members made threats of violence against Islamic organizations.
“Last night and into today the FBI conducted a raid against homes belonging to the Hutaree. They are a religious cult. They are not part of our militia community,” he said.
Lackomar said he was told there were five arrests Saturday and another five early Sunday. The FBI declined to comment.
One of the Hutaree members called a Michigan militia leader for assistance Saturday after federal agents had already began their raid, Lackomar said, but the militia member — who is of Islamic decent and had heard about the threats — declined to offer help. That Michigan militia leader is now working with federal officials to provide information on the Hutaree member for the investigation, Lackomar said Sunday.