Terror Suspect Calls Reporter, Admits US Attack Plan

Christopher Cornell, 20, says he's 'with the Islamic State
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 7, 2015 1:45 PM CST

An alleged terrorist may have undermined his not-guilty plea by saying he's "with the Islamic State" and planned lethal attacks against the US Capitol and the Israeli embassy, Fox19 NOW reports. Christopher Cornell, arrested by the FBI in January in Ohio, apparently said that and more when he called reporter Tricia Macke from a jail in Boone County, Ky. "I'm very dedicated to establish the Sharia in America, to wage war on the kafr (an Islamic term for 'unbeliever') and raise the word of Allah above all," said the 20-year-old. "The planned attack against the United States Capitol, the event in which I planned, was but a reaction to the continued American aggression, injustice, and oppression against our people." He also said he was ready to shoot President Obama and members of Congress.

According to court papers, Cornell told a confidential FBI source last year that he had communicated with people overseas but didn't think they would authorize him to perpetrate a US strike. Then, it seems, he and the informant conspired to do it anyway. Over a few meetings, the pair discussed their plan to set off home-made pipe bombs at the US Capitol, then shoot people trying to run away, federal authorities say. Now he's been charged with three felonies, his parents have turned their back on him, and experts say he sounds a lot like a terrorist. It's a particular headache for Cornell's lawyer, who couldn't convince a judge to stop Fox19 NOW from airing the phone call: Now it'll be hard "to find jurors who haven't heard it," a public defender tells the Cincinnati Enquirer. (Read more terrorist stories.)

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