DETROIT (WWJ) – A Dearborn Heights man is sentenced to five years in prison after making threats to shoot-up a church.
Federal officials contend Khalil Abu-Rayyan supported ISIS and though he was never charged with terrorism, he eventually plead guilty to charges of making a false statement to acquire a gun.
Abu-Rayyan allegedly told an undercover agent in 2015 through social media about his plans for an attack.
“I tried to shoot up a church one day,” Abu-Rayyan posted, the complaint said. “It’s one of the biggest ones in Detroit. I had it planned out. I bought a bunch of bullets. I practiced reloading and unloading. But my dad searched my car one day and he found everything. He found the gun and the bullets and a mask I was going to wear.”
The church in question went unnamed in the documents, but was said to have 6,000 members. Abu-Rayyan allegedly went on to explain why he picked the church as a target.
“It’s easy, and a lot of people go there,” the post read. “Plus people are not allowed to carry guns in church. Plus it would make the news. Everybody would’ve heard. Honestly I regret not doing it. (If I) can’t go do jihad at the Middle East, I would do my jihad over here.”
Abu-Rayyan, 22, subsequently admitted he was an habitual user of marijuana during the time he purchased the .22 caliber revolver.