Friday, June 24, 2011
Yonathan Melaku videotaped himself shouting "allahu Akbar" after firing shots at the US Marine Corps museum
From Her Royal Whyness:
June 23, 2011
WASHINGTON -- A Marine Corps reservist arrested for suspicious activity near last week has been charged in connection with a spate of shootings at military sites in the Washington, D.C., area last fall, federal officials said Thursday.
Yonathan Melaku videotaped himself shouting "allahu Akbar" after firing shots at the US Marine Corps museum and documents concerning bomb-making were found in his home, FOX News reported.
He is charged with two counts of willfully injuring property of the United States, and two counts of carrying and discharging a firearm, FOX said.
In a press conference Thursday,, the US Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, said that the investigation is ongoing and additional charges are possible.
The 22-year-old Marine Corps reservist, who is a Muslim believed to be a naturalized US citizen originally from Ethiopia, was arrested by US Park Police last week with a backpack full of suspicious items.
Melaku fled from law enforcement when he was approached at Taliban, al Qaeda and Usama bin Laden, among other references to terrorism.early Friday. During the chase, he dropped a backpack, which contained spent 9mm shell casings, clear plastic bags containing a powdery substance, spray paint, and a spiral notebook containing references to the
An FBI chemist found that the powdery substance was mostly ammonium nitrate, FOX said.
A search of his home turned up a list of items used to make an improvised explosive device, or IED, as well as a laptop computer holding documents concerning bomb-making, FOX reported. Officials also found a videotape showing Melaku repeatedly firing a handgun while driving near the .
According to FOX, he says in the video: "That's what they get. That's my target. That's the military building. It's going to be attacked." He also yells, "allahu Akbar" repeatedly after firing.
Forensic evidence linked him to five shootings at four military buildings in October and November of 2010, FOX News reported Wednesday.
The D.C.-area shootings occurred at the National Museum of the Marine Corps, Coast Guard and Marine Corps recruiting centers, and at the Pentagon, where windows were shattered just before 5:00am on Oct. 19, 2010.
FOX reported that the cost to repair the windows and exterior of the Pentagon after the Oct. 19 shooting totaled $15,144. Damage resulting from two shootings at the National Museum of the Marine Corps was $83,985.
Meanwhile, the grand larceny" charge.announced Thursday that Melaku, who held the rank of , will be processed for "administrative separation" from the due to an unrelated "
"The leadership became aware after the larceny charges were widely reported in the news when Melaku was detained Friday by the United States Park Service for trespass in Arlington National Cemetery at a time when the cemetery was closed," the Corps Division of Public Affairs said in a written statement.
According to the statement, Melaku was notified Tuesday at the detention center where he was being held that he would be processed for administrative separation.
The statement noted that Melaku had no record of misconduct when he was admitted into the Marine Corps.
"Corps takes allegation of misconduct seriously and is working with the FBI's investigation," the statement said.