I don’t know if it’s old age or simply the fact that our present-day news cycle is so chock-full of dramatic developments that our brains overwrite much that, in days gone by, would have qualified as sufficiently disturbing to leave a lasting imprint, but I seriously do not recall this story being reported when it happened back in October.
Apparently, 26-year-old Taylor Michael Wilson, who hails from St. Charles, Missouri, not far up the road from me, stopped an Amtrak train on its way from Sacramento to St. Louis. The incident occurred near Oxford, Nebraska, on a train with 175 people on board. Wilson was armed at the time and broke into a secured area and pulled the emergency brake.
Fortunately, he was subdued by Amtrak personnel until he was taken into custody by the Furnas County Sheriff’s Office, as it seems he had plans to wreak much more serious havoc. Per the St. Louis Post Dispatch:
Wilson, who has a Missouri concealed carry permit, had a fully loaded .38 caliber handgun in his waistband and a speed loader full of bullets in his front left pocket, according to the affidavit. A backpack that passengers identified as belonging to Wilson had ammunition, a hammer, a fixed blade knife and a respirator-style mask similar to ones used in construction trades.
Wilson has been charged with violating 18 USC 1992(a)(1) & (b)(1), as set forth in this affidavit. The title of that code section is “Terrorist Attacks and Other Violence Against Railroad Carriers and Against Mass Transportation Systems on Land, on Water, or Through the Air,” and carries with it the punishment of fines and imprisonment for 20 years under sub-section “a” and life under sub-section “b.”
Dude is in some serious trouble. As well he should be. Per the Post article:
Wilson had connections to “alt-right Neo Nazi” groups and phone documents that had racist messages or contained instruction manuals that investigators say “are often possessed and utilized by individuals and groups attempting or planning to commit criminal acts or acts of terrorism or violence.”
Investigators found multiple weapons, ammunition and other tactical instruments in Wilson’s home in St. Charles, including a fully automatic assault rifle and a gun that had been converted into a short-barrel rifle, both potentially violating federal gun laws.
He sounds nice….
That he was captured without doing more serious harm is something for which we can be thankful.