Final Defendant In The Clear In Hutaree Case
DETROIT (WWJ/AP) – At the request of prosecutors, a judge has dismissed charges against an Ohio man who was among members of a southern Michigan militia accused of conspiring to attack the government.
Jacob Ward of Huron, Ohio, didn’t participate in the recent trial because of his mental health. The pending case against him was dismissed Monday because Detroit federal Judge Victoria Roberts already has said the government didn’t have enough evidence to prove conspiracy charges against other Hutaree members.
Seven people were acquitted of the most serious charges in March. They included militia leader David Stone, who subsequently pleaded guilty to a gun charge and awaits his sentence.
His son Joshua Stone and co-defendant Joshua Clough, made similar guilty pleas.
Militia members were charged with conspiring to commit rebellion against the government and other crimes. The government said the Hutaree wanted to kill a police officer then attack the funeral as part of a domestic war. There was no actual attack.
Defense lawyers said the Hutaree were simply “weekend warriors” who engaged in stupid, hateful speech, but nothing criminal. They said offensive talk was wrongly turned into a high-profile criminal case.
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