SHELBY TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WWJ) – A Macomb County man was arraigned Monday after investigators foiled an alleged terrorist plot at the Lakeside Mall in Sterling Heights.
20-year-old Shelby Township resident Tyler Tindell is being held on $150,000 bond after he allegedly sent text messages to somebody he knows about planning a mass shooting at the mall, according to a release from Shelby Township police.
Sterling Heights Police Chief Dale Dwojakowski said the person that received the texts went to the Shelby Township Department, who then alerted the Sterling Heights department.
“Just like with any student that threatens to do a school shooting,” Dwojakowski said, “whether or not they planned on really doing it, the second you say you’re going to shoot somebody, or do something like that, you’re going to be charged.”
Shelby Township police officers and detectives began collectively working with the Sterling Heights Police Department and the Macomb County’s FBI Violent Crimes Task Force after receiving the tip Friday afternoon, according to the release.
Tindell was taken into custody late Friday and a search warrant was executed at his residence, finding one gun. He was charged Monday with making terrorist threat or false reports, a charge that is punishable by imprisonment for up to 20 years, or a fine of not more than $20,000.00, or both.
With this charge, prosecutors do not need to prove that the suspect had true intent or capability of carrying out the attack.
“At no time was the safety of anybody at Lakeside Mall in jeopardy,” Dwojakowski said. “This, in large part, was because of the communication between all law enforcement agencies involved in this case.”