Six Michigan residents, two Ohio residents and an Indiana resident have been indicted for attempted use of weapons of mass destruction in connection with their membership in a Lenawee County Christian militia group, according to investigators.

Members of the Hutaree — including a Michigan couple and their two sons — conspired to oppose by force the authority of the U.S. government, according to a release by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Detroit.

The indictment unsealed in U.S. District Court today claims that the Hutaree planned to kill an unidentified member of local law enforcement and then attack the law enforcement officers who gather in Michigan for the funeral. According to the plan, the Hutaree would attack law enforcement vehicles during the funeral procession with improvised explosive devices rigged with projectiles, which constitute weapons of mass destruction, according to the announcement by U.S. Attorney Barbara L. McQuade.

“Because the Hutaree had planned a covert reconnaissance operation for April which had the potential of placing an unsuspecting member of the public at risk, the safety of the public and of the law enforcement community demanded intervention at this time,” McQuade said in the announcement. “Hutaree members view local, state, and federal law enforcement as the ‘brotherhood,’ their enemy, and have been preparing to engage them in armed conflict.”

Each is charged with seditious conspiracy, attempted use of weapons of mass destruction, teaching the use of explosive materials, and possessing a firearm during a crime of violence. They face up to life in prison if convicted.

David Brian Stone, 45, the alleged leader of the group, appeared in U.S. District Court today and was ordered held without bail pending a Wednesday bond hearing.

Stone’s ex-wife, Donna Stone, 44, of Adrian, said David Stone’s growing fascination with the Hutaree group caused her to leave the marriage.

She said he went from teaching people how to use handguns to talking about the end of the world.

“I just couldn’t go along with what he believed in. He started to take it too far,” Donna Stone said.

She said her biological son David Brian Stone Jr., who is David Sr.’s adopted son, was brainwashed by David Sr.

They are being arraigned today at 10 a.m. before U.S. District Court Magistrate Judge Donald A. Scheer.

The announcement comes after a series of raids Saturday night and Sunday near Adrian and in Ohio and Indiana.

“This is an example of radical and extremist fringe groups which can be found throughout our society,” the FBI’s Detroit Special Agent In Charge Andrew Arena said announcing the indictments. “The FBI takes such extremist groups seriously, especially those who would target innocent citizens and the law enforcement officers who protect the citizens of the United States.”

Source: Ben Schmitt, Tammy Stables Battaglia, Niraj Warikoo for Detroit Free Press

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