Gretchen Whitmer: Man Sentenced Over Kidnap Plot

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image captionGretchen Whitmer faced backlash last year over Covid restrictions

A man has been sentenced to more than six years in prison for plotting to kidnap Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer over the state’s Covid-19 restrictions.

Ty Garbin was part of a group of more than a dozen men accused of involvement in the plot.

He was sentenced on Wednesday and also ordered to pay a $2,500 (£1,820) fine.

Ms Whitmer introduced restrictions last year to prevent the spread of Covid. Many of the curbs have been lifted.

The defendants, some of which are members of an anti-government paramilitary group in Michigan, considered storming the state Capitol in Lansing. However they then planned to kidnap Ms Whitmer from her holiday home last year, the New York Times reports.

Six of the group have been charged in a federal court and Garbin, 25, is the only one to have pleaded guilty. A further seven face charges of terrorism and gang-related offences in state court in connection with the plot.

Garbin signed a plea agreement, describing the plot in detail. He said that six men trained at his house, constructing a “shoot house” to resemble the governor’s holiday home and “assaulting it with firearms”..

According to Garbin’s lawyer, his client had become frustrated with Covid restrictions after losing income in his job as an aviation mechanic.

On Wednesday, Garbin apologised to Ms Whitmer for the “stress and fear” her family had felt.

In a witness impact statement, Ms Whitmer said threats against her continue.

“I have looked out my windows and seen large groups of heavily armed people within 30 yards of my home. I have seen myself hung in effigy. Days ago at a demonstration there was a sign that called for ‘burning the witch,” she said.

Mrs Whitmer’s lockdown orders drew thousands of protesters to the state capitol, where many compared her to German dictator Adolf Hitler.

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