VIDEO: New Militia Standoff?
Video: Michigan-based Christian militia group raided by the FBI ove...
Video Local News on Hutaree militia Federal Indictment
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ADRIAN, Mich. (WXYZ) - Law enforcement officials may have found the last suspect in the "Hutaree" case.militiaindict1.pdfSources tell Action News that the FBI is involved in a standoff in North Adams Village, about 30 miles from the site of Saturday's raid in Adrian. They are believed to be looking for Josh Stone, the son of the group leader David Stone.The younger Stone has been on the run since the raid. So far the FBI has not commented on the standoff.Several members of "Hutaree," a religious militia group based out of Lenawee County, are in court facing federal charges that include conspiracy and attempting to use weapons of mass destruction.Nine people group members have been charged with a list of federal crimes. Seven of the suspects appeared in court Monday morning to be indicted.Arrests were made over the weekend after the FBI, the Department of Homeland Security and the Joint Terrorism Task Force took part in raids around Adrian that may be connected to a religious militia group known as "Hutaree."In a federal indictment, the government says the group is an anti-government, extremist organization that planned war with the United States. It is also alleged that the group wanted to kill members of law enforcement.Federal charges include Seditious Conspiracy, Attempt to Use Weapons of Mass Destruction, Teaching/Demonstrating Use of Explosive Materials and two counts of Carrying, Using and Posessing a Firearm During and in Relation to a Crime of Violence.The nine people named in the indictment are as follows:David Brian Stone, 45Tina Stone, 44Joshua Matthew Stone, 21David Brian Stone, Jr., 19Joshua Clough, 28Michael Meeks, 40Thomas Piatek, 46Kristopher Sickles, 27Jacob Ward, 33The leader of the group is David Stone Sr., and is known by group members as "Captain Hutaree."His ex-wife, Donna Stone, talked with Action News about Stone."He's got a temper. He can get radical. He wants things done his way," Donna Stone told Action News.Investigators say group members have been meeting regularly to conduct military-style training in order to prepare for war with the government, law enforcement and federal workers.Brittany Bryant, the woman who is engaged to David Stone Jr. - son of the group's leader, says the group isn't dangerous."I don't think they're dangerous. If they wanted to do something they would have already done something," says Brittany Bryant.The FBI conducted multiple raids throughout Saturday and into Sunday, with one of them centered on a property where known members of the militia live.Helicopters were spotted in the sky for much of the night Saturday, and agents set up checkpoints throughout the area, including in Sand Creek and Clayton in Lenawee County. Witnesses tell Action News that it was like a small army had descended on the area.A command center, including two satellite trucks and a radio tower, had been set up at the Washtenaw County Sheriff's Department in Ann Arbor. It has since been dismantled.Sunday, authorities also blocked off roads in Dover Township, while they gathered evidence from a home.The group's web site shows training videos of men wearing camouflage, carrying rifles, and maneuvering through rough terrain. The site also includes information similar to a manifesto, that says members need to be ready for the Anti-Christ and that Jesus wants members to be ready to defend themselves with the sword.Authorities are expected to release more information about the investigation early this week.An official with FBI has also said two people were arrested Saturday in Ohio, and one person was arrested in Illinois.
The Strange Case of Kristopher Sickles and the Hutaree Militia
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UPDATED: 6:21 pm EDT March 29,2010
WASHINGTON -- g for the Antichrist were charged with conspiring to kill police officers, then kill scores more by attacking a funeral using homemade bombs, federal prosecutors said Monday.
The Michigan-based group, called Hutaree, planned to use the attack on police as a catalyst for a larger uprising against the government, according to newly unsealed court papers. U.S. Attorney Barbara McQuade said agents moved quickly on the group because its members were planning a violent mission sometime in April.
WATCH:Who Are The Christian Militia 'Hutarees'?
Members of the group, including its leader, David Brian Stone, also known as "Captain Hutaree," were charged following FBI raids over the weekend on locations in Michigan, Ohio and Indiana. Seven people were arraigned in Detroit on Monday, and another one of Stone's sons, Joshua, is being sought.
Stone's ex-wife, Donna Stone, told The Associated Press before the arraignments that her former husband was to blame for pulling her son into the movement. She said David Brian Stone legally adopted her son, David Brian Stone Jr., who is among those indicted.
"It started out as a Christian thing," said Donna Stone, 44. "You go to church. You pray. You take care of your family. I think David started to take it a little too far."
According to the indictment, the group had been meeting and conducting military-style training exercises in the Michigan woods since 2008 to prepare for an impending war with its enemies. Members practiced building and detonating explosives and shooting firearms and built storage bunkers, investigators said.
The group says on its Web site that Hutaree means "Christian warrior" and describes the word as part of a secret language that few are privileged to know. The group quotes several Bible passages and states: "We believe that one day, as prophecy says, there will be an Anti-Christ. ... Jesus wanted us to be ready to defend ourselves using the sword and stay alive using equipment."
The site also features a picture on the site of 17 camouflaged men, all holding large guns, and includes videos of camouflaged men toting guns and running through wooded areas in apparent training exercises. Each wears a patch on his left shoulder that bears a cross and two red spears.
WATCH:FBI Raids Have Militia Group In Spotlight
According to investigators, the Hutaree view local, state, and federal law enforcement personnel as a "brotherhood" and an enemy, and planned to attack them as part of an armed struggle against the U.S. government.
The idea of attacking a police funeral was one of numerous scenarios discussed as ways to go after law enforcement officers, the indictment said. Other scenarios included using a fake 911 call to lure an officer to his or her death, killing an officer after a traffic stop or an attacking the family of a police officer.
Once other officers gathered for a slain officer's funeral, the group planned to detonate homemade bombs at the funeral, killing scores more, according to the indictment.
After the attacks, the group allegedly planned to retreat to "rally points" protected by trip-wired improvised explosive devices, or IEDs, for what they expected would become a violent standoff with law enforcement personnel.
The indictment says members of the group conspired "to levy war against the United States, (and) to oppose by force the authority of the government of the United States."
The charges against the eight include seditious conspiracy, possessing a firearm during a crime of violence, teaching the use of explosives, and attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction -- homemade bombs. All seven defendants in court on Monday requested to be represented by the federal defender's office, and a bond hearing is set for Wednesday.
The arrests have dealt "a severe blow to a dangerous organization that today stands accused of conspiring to levy war against the United States," U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder said Monday.
The raids on the group began over the weekend. FBI agents in Michigan swarmed a rural, wooded property Saturday evening in Adrian, about 70 miles southwest of Detroit. The same night in Hammond, Ind., law enforcement agents flooded a neighborhood, startling workers at a nearby pizzeria. In Ohio, authorities blocked off streets and raided two homes.
Outside Adrian, Heidi Wood, who lives near the property that was raided, said she hears gunshots "all the time" from near two ramshackle trailers that sit side-by-side. On Monday, a long gun leaned against a washing machine that sat in the yard, and on top of a nearby canister was another long gun.
Wood's mother, Phyllis Brugger, who has lived in the area for more than 30 years, said Stone and his family were known as having ties to militia. They would shoot guns and often wore camouflage, she said.
"Everybody knew they were militia," Brugger said. "You don't mess with them."
In Ohio, one of the raids occurred at Bayshore Estates, a well-kept trailer park in Sandusky, a small city on Lake Erie between Toledo and Cleveland. Neighbors said the man taken into custody lived in a trailer on a cul-de-sac with his wife and two young children.
The man's wife, Kelly Sickles, said her husband collected guns as a hobby. Agents searched their home for bomb-making materials, she said, but she couldn't believe her husband, Kristopher Sickles, 27, could be connected to a group that was plotting anything violent.
"He doesn't even know how to make a bomb," she said. "We had no bomb material here."
Barrett reported from Washington. Associated Press Writers David Aguilar and Jeff Karoub in Detroit; Mike Householder in Adrian, Mich.; Rick Callahan and Charles Wilson in Indianapolis; John Seewer in Sandusky, Ohio; and Matt Leingang in Columbus, Ohio, contributed to this story.
Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.