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Case Number: 3:19-cr-00004-JGC
Judge: James G. Carr
Court: United States District Court for the Northern District of Ohio (Lucas County)
Plaintiff's Attorney: Michael Freeman and Tracey Tangeman
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Description: Cleveland, OH - The United States of America charged Vincent Armstrong with conspiracy to receive an explosive with intent to kill, intimidate any individual and maliciously damage of destroy by or explosive.
Vincent Armstrong, 24, was sentenced to 72 months of incarceration for his involvement in planning a terrorist attack at a local Toledo bar. His co-defendant and live-in girlfriend, Elizabeth Lecron, was previously sentenced to 180 months of incarceration and lifetime supervised release.
“This defendant admitted to helping plot and plan a mass-casualty attack in Toledo,” said U.S. Attorney Justin Herdman. “His sentence reflects the seriousness of the charges against him and should serve as a reminder to all who live in our District and beyond - we will never stop working to protect our families, friends and neighbors.”
"Vincent Armstrong's sentence will ensure he remains safely away from the public for some time,” said FBI Special Agent in Charge Eric Smith. “He and his fellow conspirator, Elizabeth LeCron, planned to attack and murder their fellow citizens for no other reason than their infatuation with violence. The FBI once again applauds the public for bringing LeCron and Armstrong's plans to the attention of law enforcement. Without the reporting of their dangerous plans one of our communities could have suffered a horrendous mass shooting. Law enforcement depends on the public's vigilance to counter insidious plots like these."
Toledo Police Chief George Kral said: “With the sentencing of this potential mass murderer, as was the case in his co-conspirators, residents of Toledo and NW Ohio are safer. Sadly, these individuals reside not only in our major cities, but also much closer to home. I commend the relationships and collaborations we have with of local, state and federal law enforcement partners. Toledoans can sleep soundly knowing that law enforcement will never cease in the identification, investigation, and prosecution of those who want to hurt innocent people.”
As set out in court filings and during court hearings, Lecron and Armstrong met and started dating in early 2018. The two became immersed in a subculture that fixated and lionized mass murderers known as the “True Crime Community.” Their obsession included a trip in August 2018 to visit the sights related to the Columbine High School shooting to pay tribute to the shooters.
Lecron and Armstrong privately discussed committing their own mass murder in the Toledo area and referred to this attack as “D-day.” They discussed using bombs and guns to kill, maim, and injure innocent people. They took several steps in preparation for “D-day.” They purchased guns and went to the shooting range to practice their firearm skills. They also printed instructions to make pipe bombs and bought some the necessary components. They detailed their plan and feelings in personal journals. For instance, Armstrong wrote that he had “a vision to kill” and Lecron wrote, “D-day will be my salvation.”
18 U.S.C. 844(n) Conspiracy to Transport of Receive an Explosive with Intent to Kill, Injury, or Intimidate Any Individual, and Maliciously Damage or Destroy by Fire or Explosive
This conduct took place between April 2018 and December 10, 2018.
Outcome: Defendant sentenced to a term of 72 months custody as to Count 1; Supervised release for a term of 3 years with standard and special conditions. Counts 2,3 and 6 dismissed. Fine: Waived. Special Assessment: $100.00.