A group caught by the FBI plotting to kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer wanted to take her to a “secure location” in Wisconsin and try her for treason, officials said.
Federal and state authorities have charged more than a dozen people in connection with a scheme to abduct Whitmer from her vacation home and hold her hostage, according to a criminal complaint.
Adam Fox, Ty Garbin, Kaleb Franks, Daniel Harris, Brandon Caserta and Barry Croft were named in the criminal complaint. Charges were later announced against Paul Bellar, Shawn Fix, Eric Molitor, Michael Null, William Null, Pete Musico and Joseph Morrison.
Through confidential informants and undercover agents, the FBI monitored the plot for several months, and one of the plans discussed by the group involved what to do with Whitmer after the planned kidnapping, court documents reveal.
On July 27, an FBI informant met with Fox at Fox’s business in Grand Rapids, officials said. The informant was secretly recording audio from the meeting.
Fox told the informant that their best opportunity to abduct Whitmer would be as she arrived at or left the vacation home or her official summer residence, authorities said.
Both residents are in the Western District of Michigan.
“Snatch and grab, man,” Fox said, according to the audio tape. “Grab the f****** governor. Just grab the b****, because at this point, we do that, dude, it’s over.”
According to the criminal complaint, Fox said they would take Whitmer to a secure location in Wisconsin after the kidnapping. There, she would undergo a “trial,” officials said.
When he said, “trial,” Fox was likely referencing a June 14 discussion he had with other members of the conspiracy in Dublin, Ohio. That conversation was also recoreded by the FBI’s informant.
During that June 14 meeting, Fox said Whitmer would be tried for “treason” after the kidnapping.