SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – A foiled terror plot in Sacramento was stopped by the FBI.
Two Northern California men are now charged with plotting to bomb the California Democratic headquarters.READ MORE: Sheriff: Deputy Likely Saved Motorcyclist’s Life With Tourniquet After Amador County Crash
“Nothing like this has ever happened,” said Sandy Silva.
She woke up early Wednesday morning to the commotion in her Arden-area apartment complex.
“My neighbor called and said there’s 14 FBI agents out front,” she said.
She says those agents were at her neighbor Jerrod Copeland’s apartment. She had no idea he would be charged with being involved in an alleged domestic terror threat to blow up the Democratic headquarters.
Neighbor Roman Geiger was moving out of the complex Friday, he was suspicious of his neighbor.
“You can tell there’s something going on. I guess it’s a good time, I’m leaving,” he said.
Federal prosecutors say Ian Rogers, 45, and Copeland, 37, started plotting an attack on targets they associated with Democrats after the 2020 presidential election, hoping to spark a movement to overthrow the government.
The headquarters were named after John L. Burton when it was renovated in 2014. Burton released a statement Friday, saying:READ MORE: Growth Of Dixie Fire Slows Considerably; Full Containment Expected By Mid-August
“I call on my former Republican colleagues to condemn the plan to blow up the John L. Burton California Democratic Party Headquarters in Sacramento. Where are the Republicans I served with for the better part of six decades in condemning against that this planned act of domestic terrorism? It’s time they get some cojones and stand up against this kind of violence.”
At Insight Coffee just down the street from the Democratic headquarters, some say they’re not surprised to hear about this plot.
“It’s sad, but there’s a lot of misinformation going around,” one customer said.
Rogers was arrested in January after officials searched his business and found weapons, thousands of rounds of ammunition and five pipe bombs.
Prosecutors say Rogers and Copeland used multiple messaging apps to discuss the attacks, in one conversation they talked about reaching out to an anti-government militia for support.
With so much raw opinion on social media, CBS13 asked former Special Agent with the FBI John Sommercamp about how they investigate situations like this.
“In order to determine if it’s a real threat, they just have to go through basic investigative steps to verify what the intent of the person or group is,” he said.
Sommercamp says almost always the FBI will start with social media, look at what’s posted and whether the conversation talks about weapons or violence.
“At some point, they’ll work to try to introduce to the group undercovers or confidential human sources so they can collect evidence and build a case,” he said.MORE NEWS: Paul Flores To Face Judge In Preliminary Hearing In Kristin Smart Murder Case
Both men are set to appear in federal court later this month.