2 charged with plotting to blow up Democratic headquarters

Jul 15, 2021, 8:12 PM | Updated: 10:10 pm

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Two California men have been charged with plotting to blow up the Democratic Party’s headquarters in the state capital, a bombing they hoped would be the first in a series of politically-motivated attacks, federal prosecutors said Thursday.

The pair used multiple messaging apps to plan to attack targets they associated with Democrats after the November 2020 presidential election, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said in a statement. Their first intended target was the John L. Burton Democratic Headquarters in Sacramento, prosecutors said.

“According to the indictment, the defendants planned to use incendiary devices to attack their targets and hoped their attacks would prompt a movement,” the statement said.

Ian Benjamin Rogers, 45, and Jarrod Copeland, 37, each face multiple charges including conspiracy to destroy by fire or explosive a building used or in affecting interstate commerce, prosecutors said.

Rogers, of Napa, is charged with additional weapons violations, including one count of possession of unregistered destructive devices, and three counts of possession of machine guns. Copeland, of Vallejo, is charged with an additional count of destruction of records.

It wasn’t known Thursday evening if the men have attorneys who could speak on their behalf.

“I want to blow up a democrat building bad,” Rogers wrote, according to the indictment unsealed Thursday in San Francisco federal court. Copeland responded, “I agree” and “Plan attack,” the indictment says.

In late December 2020, Copeland told Rogers he contacted an anti-government militia group to gather support for their movement, according to court documents.

In one exchange, Rogers wrote to Copeland, “after the 20th we go to war,” meaning that they would initiate acts of violence after Joe Biden’s inauguration on Jan. 20, 2021, the court papers say.

On Jan. 15, law enforcement officers searched Rogers’s home and seized a cache of weapons, including 45 to 50 firearms, thousands of rounds of ammunition, and five pipe bombs, prosecutors said.

Copeland is accused of attempting to destroy evidence of the plan after Rogers’ Jan. 15 arrest.

Rusty Hicks, chair of the California Democratic Party, called the accusations “extremely disturbing.”

“We are relieved to know the plot was unsuccessful, the individuals believed to be responsible are in custody, and our staff and volunteers are safe and sound,” Hicks said in a statement. “Yet, it points to a broader issue of violent extremism that is far too common in today’s political discourse.”

Copeland was arrested Wednesday and made an initial court appearance Thursday. He’s scheduled to appear in court again on July 20 for a detention hearing. Rogers is scheduled to appear in court July 30 for a status conference.

If convicted on all charges, each defendant faces a maximum of 20 years in prison, officials said.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Associated Press

Woman charged after 1,000 pigs found dead at Iowa site

SAC CITY, Iowa (AP) — An Iowa woman is facing criminal charges after more than 1,000 pigs were found dead on a property. KCCI-TV reports that the Sac County Sheriff’s Office responded to a call Thursday and found the animals dead at two confinement sites. Authorities say 33-year-old Elana Laber was responsible for maintaining the […]
8 hours ago
FILE - Police and other first responders work the scene where officials say dozens of people have b...
Associated Press

Texas’ border mission grows, but crossings still high

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Following the horror of a human-smuggling attempt that left 53 people dead, Republican Gov. Greg Abbott ordered state troopers to inspect more trucks — again expanding a border security mission that has cost billions, given the National Guard arrest powers and bused migrants to Washington, D.C. What Abbott’s get-tough plans haven’t […]
8 hours ago
Travelers arrive on foot at Roissy-Charles de Gaulle airport while airport workers demonstrate, lef...
Associated Press

Stuck bags add to tangles at Paris airports amid travel boom

Airlines worked Saturday to deliver luggage to passengers around the world after a technical breakdown left at least 1,500 bags stuck at Paris’ Charles de Gaulle airport, the latest of several tangles hitting travelers this summer. The airport’s baggage sorting system had a technical malfunction Friday that caused 15 flights to depart without luggage, leaving […]
8 hours ago
FILE - In this Feb. 17, 2018, file photo, an early morning fog rises where 17 memorial crosses were...
Associated Press

Parkland jurors must manage trial stress on their own

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) — The jurors chosen this past week to decide whether Florida school shooter Nikolas Cruz is executed will visit a bloodstained crime scene, view graphic photos and videos and listen to intense emotional testimony — an experience that they will have to manage entirely on their own. Throughout what is expected […]
8 hours ago
FILE - An overnight individual egg strata is shown April 4, 2016, in Concord, N.H. Federal regulati...
Associated Press

From AM to PM, the fickle force of government is with you

WASHINGTON (AP) — When you groggily roll out of bed and make breakfast, the government edges up to your kitchen table, too. Unlike you, it’s perky. It’s an unseen force in your morning. The government makes sure you can see the nutrients in your cereal. It fusses over your toast, insisting that the flour it […]
8 hours ago
FILE - Boxes of the drug mifepristone line a shelf at the West Alabama Women's Center in Tuscaloosa...
Associated Press

Medication abortion is common; here’s how it works

Medication abortions became the preferred method for ending pregnancy in the U.S. even before the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade. These involve taking two prescription medicines days apart — at home or in a clinic. Abortion procedures are an invasive medical technique that empties the womb. They are sometimes called surgical abortions, although they […]
8 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...
Carla Berg, MHS, Deputy Director, Public Health Services, Arizona Department of Health Services

Vaccines are safe if you are pregnant or breastfeeding

Are you pregnant? Do you have a friend or loved one who’s expecting?
...
Day & Night Air

Tips to lower your energy bill in the Arizona heat

Does your summer electric bill make you groan? Are you looking for effective ways to reduce your bill?
...
Christina O’Haver

BE FAST to spot a stroke

Every 40 seconds—that’s how often someone has a stroke in the United States. It’s the fifth leading cause of death among Americans, with someone dying of a stroke every 3.5 minutes.
2 charged with plotting to blow up Democratic headquarters