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ISIS Sympathizer Arrested One Day Before Alleged Plot To Attack American Churches

Here's what we know so far...

An 18 year old who had pledged allegiance to ISIS was arrested one day before FBI had credible information about an imminent attack on several local churches.

The FBI announced the arrest of Alexander Scott Mercurio, an 18yo from Coeur d’Alene, Idaho on Saturday, alleging he was preparing an attack on local area churches the following day, in support of ISIS terrorist ideology.

The FBI press release alleges:

According to the affidavit in support of the criminal complaint, Mercurio pledged his allegiance to ISIS and intended to commit attacks on its behalf. He planned to attack individuals at churches in Coeur d’Alene on April 7 using weapons, including knives, firearms, and fire.

The FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force (JTTF) conducted the investigation and thwarted Mercurio’s violent plot. Mercurio is currently in custody awaiting his initial appearance which will be set by the Court.

“As alleged in the complaint, the defendant swore an oath of loyalty to ISIS and planned to wage an attack in its name on churches in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho,” said Attorney General Merrick B. Garland. “Thanks to the investigative efforts of the FBI, the defendant was taken into custody before he could act, and he is now charged with attempting to support ISIS’s mission of terror and violence. The Justice Department will continue to relentlessly pursue, disrupt, and hold accountable those who would commit acts of terrorism against the people and interests of the United States.”

“The defendant allegedly pledged loyalty to ISIS and sought to attack people attending churches in Idaho, a truly horrific plan which was detected and thwarted by the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force,” said FBI Director Christopher Wray. “This investigation demonstrates the FBI’s steadfast commitment to work with our law enforcement partners to stop those who wish to commit acts of violence on behalf of – or inspired by – foreign terrorist groups.”

CBS rounded out the details of the plot with some alleged statements attributed to the accused that shed further light on possible motive:

Mercurio is accused of writing to an unnamed FBI source that he was set to “stop close by the church, equip the weapon(s) and storm the temple, killing as many people as possible.” His goal, according to investigators, was to carry out an act of martyrdom before the end of Ramadan — the holy month observed peacefully by Islam practitioners across the globe that emphasizes prayer and fasting — and pledge his allegiance to the leader of ISIS.
[…] Earlier this year, he met at various points with a confidential FBI source and reiterated his desire to die a martyr. In meetings and via online messaging, Mercurio allegedly revealed that he planned to “donate every last cent in my bank to the State (ISIS)” and wanted to film a video message in support of ISIS before he carried out his attack.

“I really want to (carry out) an operation,” investigators alleged he said recently, and at a different time told the confidential FBI source that he wanted to “fix” what he saw as too many churches in his area.

According to prosecutors, his plan involved attacking his father with a metal pipe, stealing his guns and using them in the attack. Other components allegedly included using chemicals like hand sanitizer or butane to destroy the churches he targeted.

On April 3, the FBI informant fillmed Mercurio declaring his allegiance to the leader of ISIS, charging documents alleged. He held a knife and took a photo in front of a flag wielded by the terrorist organization.

When asked by the confidential source on April 5 if he was going to postpone his plans, prosecutors said Mercurio responded, “No…I can delay it beyond Tuesday anyway,” as described in court records.

The FBI executed a search warrant at his family’s home and arrested Mercurio on Saturday, one day before they said he intended to carry out the attack. Investigators seized a metal pipe, butane, hand sanitizer, a machete and multiple firearms locked in his father’s closet.

It’s nice to see that the FBI was able to squeeze in an investigation into ISIS sympathizers among all the other plates they’ve got spinning: like infiltrating bible studies, collecting Lego kits as evidence of participating in an ‘insurrection’, attempting to incite MAGA voters to participating in criminal conspiracies like kidnapping a governor, or labeling concerned parents as ‘terrorists’, or sending grandmothers to jail for praying by abortion clinics.

Psalms of War: Prayers That Literally Kick Ass is a collection, from the book of Psalms, regarding how David rolled in prayer. I bet you haven’t heard these read, prayed, or sung in church against our formidable enemies — and therein lies the Church’s problem. We’re not using the spiritual weapons God gave us to waylay the powers of darkness. It might be time to dust them off and offer ‘em up if you’re truly concerned about the state of Christ’s Church and of our nation.

Also included in this book, Psalms of War, are reproductions of the author’s original art from his Biblical Badass Series of oil paintings.

This is a great gift for the prayer warriors. Real. Raw. Relevant.

Wes Walker

Wes Walker is the author of "Blueprint For a Government that Doesn't Suck". He has been lighting up since its inception in July of 2012. Follow on twitter: @Republicanuck