Three anti-government nut jobs who were plotting to arm themselves with homemade bombs in order to “defend themselves” against a “Jade Helm 15” martial law takeover have recently been charged with conspiracy to violate laws governing firearms and explosives.
Those men are 50-year old Walter Eugene Litteral, 42-year-old Christopher James Barker and 30-year-old Christopher Todd Campbell from Gaston County, North Carolina. Both Campbell and Barker have criminal records. Campbell was arrested in 2011 for kidnapping, assault and marijuana possession, and Barker had a long history of convictions for possession of cocaine and stolen goods.
Recently unsealed court documents showed that the trio had collected weapons and had been talking about building homemade explosive devices to take down the supposed Obama-led military troops that right-wing conspiracy theorists have been obsessing over.
According to court documents, the FBI had first been alerted to the men in June, when a tipster expressed concern that Litteral and Campbell were “preparing to use lethal force against United States government forces in order to defend against the imposition of martial law or other infringements on their rights.” The tipster said that the two men said “Jade Helm 15” was actually a cover for the implementation of martial law and had ordered a large amount of military-grade equipment ranging from body armor, Kevlar helmets, smokeless rifle powder, two-way radios, balaclavas and 60 rounds of ammo for a .338 caliber long-range rifle. The men requested that the order be delivered by July 15th, the beginning date of the Jade Helm 15 military training exercise.
According to court documents, there were recorded conversations that prove Litteral was planning to rig his home with bombs in case government agents came. In a June 19 phone call, Litteral told the tipster:
“Lemme tell you something I gunna have my f*cking house rigged up these mother f*ckers come try to come in my house its going off we gonna look here we’re partying.”
A few days before that, Litteral had a conversation with someone known as “J”, which implied that his wife was aware of his plans:
“I got a f*cking 45 beside my bed. I got a 45 and a 9 mil in my truck. I’ve got a 9 mil and a 380 or a 380 in her car. Safe full of weapons. You know what? Every time I open up this damn safe, I mean I’ve got, I’ve got at least 30 weapons that I can see and some tucked all the way in the back, back.”
Litteral had also given detailed insight into the different homemade explosives he intended to create, one of which he called a “game changer.” This device would have been made by packing nail-coated tennis balls with gun powder and Tannerite, an explosive. He also said he could make explosions by shooting a gun powder and ball bearings-filled coffee can and detonate pipe bombs by putting fireworks inside.
Campbell’s role in the ambush plot was to make dummy grenades into live ones. Barker would supply pope fittings for pipe bombs. According to Campbell, he and Litterall were going to booby-trap a 99-acre plot of land near Clover, South Carolina to “draw government’s forces into the camp and kill them.”
All three men are scheduled to appear in court on Thursday for a bond hearing.
The unfortunately predictable thing about all of this? These guys aren’t being depicted as terrorists, even though that’s what they definitely are. Just like many others, their white privilege has saved them from being rightfully labeled. You can bet that if these three right-wing nuts had been foreign, this would be a completely different story.
Featured image courtesy of WCCB Charlotte.
Opinion columnist and former editor-in-chief of Occupy Democrats. He graduated from Bennington College with a Bachelor's degree in history and political science. He now focuses on advancing the cause of social justice and equality in America.