Authorities have arrested Demetrius Pitts, an Al-Qaeda sympathizer, for allegedly planning a terrorist attack in downtown Cleveland on July 4. "His Facebook posts, quite frankly, we disturbing". He also voiced hatred against the USA military, saying he would "chop off heads and hands", which are punishment methods used by Islamic terrorist organizations such as ISIS, al-Qaeda, and the Taliban.
"We gonna hit the Bicentennial City Philadelphia", he told the undercover agent, according to court filings.
He is a US citizen, radicalized in the US, Anthony said.
Authorities said he actively conducted surveillance in downtown Cleveland, looked for a parking spot for a van packed with explosives and also expressed a desire to give remote control cars packed with explosives and shrapnel to children of military personnel. The maximum sentence if convicted of the charge is 20 years, the affidavit said. It was not clear if he possessed explosive materials or the expertise to use them, but officials said they made the arrest because he was preparing to take some form of terrorist action.
CLEVELAND - According to the Cleveland office of the FBI, Demetrius Nathaniel Pitts, a USA citizen also known as Abdur Raheem Rahfeeq, is accused of scouting Voinovich Park and other Cleveland locations as potential sites to stage an attack during Cleveland's July 4th celebration.
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Pitts met with the undercover agent again Sunday, where he also discussed a separate attack in Philadelphia.
Downtown Cleveland along with many other U.S. cities host fireworks displays every year to celebrate the U.S. Fourth of July holiday.
"Additional conversations with extremely concerning statements of intentions made by Pitts are specified in the federal complaint", said Stephen Anthony, FBI Special Agent in Charge.
Pitts was expected to appear before a federal judge later Monday.
Pitts also said, "I don't care and I have no regrets", according to Herdman, Fox reported.