A man in Akron, Ohio, was arrested on federal charges he solicited the murders of United States military personnel, the U.S. Justice Department announced Thursday. The man declared his support on social media on numerous occasions for the Islamic State group and is accused of posting a file online that released the names of purported military members while calling for supporters to carry out their killings, according to an affidavit filed in the case.
Terrence J. McNeil, 25, appeared in U.S. District Court in Cleveland after being charged with a count of solicitation of a crime of violence. On a Tumblr account, McNeil allegedly re-blogged a file with the banner “Islamic State Hacking Division,” which was followed by “Target: United States Military” and “Leak: Addresses of 100 U.S. Military Personnel,” according to an affidavit filed in the case.
The GIF file, which plays a series of images on a loop, reads, “O Brothers in America, know that the jihad against the crusaders is not limited to the lands of the Khilafah. It is a worldwide jihad, and their war is not just a war against the Islamic State. It is a war against Islam. … Know that it is wajib [translated as 'necessary'] for you to kill these kuffar! And now we have made it easy for you by giving you addresses. All you need to do is take the final step, so what are you waiting for? Kill them in their own lands, behead them in their own homes, stab them to death as they walk their streets thinking that they are safe," the Justice Department said. The file then allegedly showed photographs of purported members of the U.S. military, along with their names, addresses and military branches.
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“According to the allegations in the complaint, Terrence McNeil solicited the murder of members of our military by disseminating ISIL’s violent rhetoric, circulating detailed U.S. military personnel information, and explicitly calling for the killing of American service members in their homes and communities,” Assistant Attorney General John Carlin said in a Justice Department statement. “ISIL and its followers continue to use social media in an attempt to incite violence around the world, including in the United States. The National Security Division's highest priority is counterterrorism and we will use all of our tools to disrupt threats and acts of violence against our military members and their families.”
The case is being investigated by the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force in Cleveland and is being prosecuted by U.S. attorney’s office and the National Security Division’s Counterterrorism Section.