Dead suspect planned to behead police, US court hears
04 June 2015, 08:24
New York - A 26-year-old security guard
shot dead by police and the FBI in Boston planned to behead American police
officers at random to wage violent jihad, court papers said on Wednesday.
Usaamah Rahim purchased three
military-style knives and a sharpener from Amazon.com before allegedly deciding
to "go after" the "boys in blue" because they were
"the easiest target".
But he was killed outside a pharmacy at 07:00
on Tuesday. Police said he refused to drop his weapon and lunged towards five
retreating officers, who then shot him to save their lives.
An alleged associate, David Wright, 25,
appeared in court on Wednesday charged with conspiring to obstruct a federal
He was allegedly fully informed of Rahim's
plans and ordered him to delete his phone and computer data, and destroy his
Smart phone to prevent it falling into the hands of law enforcement.
Court papers said Rahim, who lived in
Boston, had been "planning to engage in a violent attack in the United
States" since May 26 - little over a week before his death.
He allegedly ordered three knives from
Amazon, which were delivered to his home, and discussed his plan with Wright
and a third person on a beach in Rhode Island last Sunday.
Plan to behead victim
Wright allegedly told the FBI the first
plan was to behead an unnamed victim in another state, but Rahim telephoned him
at 05:00 on the morning of his death to change his mind.
Instead he told Wright that he was going to
"go after" the "boys in blue," and randomly kill police
officers in Massachusetts - either on Tuesday or Wednesday - the court papers
It was with one of the knives purchased
from Amazon that Rahim lunged towards officers two hours later, court papers
Wright was arrested overnight and accused
with conspiring with Rahim to destroy, mutilate, conceal and cover up his smart
phone in order to obstruct an investigation, which is a federal offense.
Rahim at first had plotted to behead Pamela
Geller, an activist and conservative blogger, law enforcement sources told CNN
television. She was in the spotlight last month when a security officer stopped
an attack at her group's contest for Prophet Muhammad drawings in Garland,
Threat to law enforcement
If convicted, Wright faces up to five years
in prison and a fine of $250 000.
Boston Police Commissioner William Evans
said there had been intelligence for "weeks" that military and law
enforcement lives were at threat.
Authorities put out "several
notices" about the threat of attack on law enforcement and military bases,
The court papers made no mention of when,
where or how Rahim may have become susceptible to extremist Islamist thought.
A senior official warned last week that the
United States launches a new investigation into suspected sympathisers of the
Islamic State extremist group in Iraq and Syria almost every day.
On Wednesday, a Muslim community leader
shown a video of Rahim's death, said there was no evidence to back up a claim
from his family that he had been shot in the back as he waited for the bus.
Not shot in the back
"It was not at a bus stop. He was not
shot in the back," Imam Abdullah Faaruuq told reporters.
It was not clear what happened and the
knife was not visible but "he was approaching them. They did back
up," Faaruuq acknowledged.
Evans said the video showed five law
enforcement officers retreating with their hands up, and that witness and
officer accounts had detailed commands on the suspect to drop his weapon.
"You see them go a good 15 yards with
a threat coming at them. We can all agree. The weaponry is not clear, but with
five officers coming at them, there was no doubt in the video," said