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Terrorism News

A collection of open-source terrorism news from around the world.
Keyword: domestic extremist threats & trends

An Indiana man who said he was headed to a gay pride event had a loaded assault rifle with magazines rigged to allow 60 shots to be fired in quick succession, along with 15 pounds of chemicals mixed and ready to explode, according to police in California.

James Wesley Howell, 20, of Charlestown, also had two other loaded rifles, ammunition, a stun gun, a buck knife and a security badge when he was arrested early Sunday in Santa Monica, authorities said Tuesday.

Howell made his initial court appearance Tuesday and pleaded not guilty to three felony weapons and ammunition charges. The judge set bail at $2 million.

Alone, each item found in Howell’s car might not indicate anything sinister, Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Keith Schwartz said. But together, they “just don’t pass the common sense test.”

Read more: CBS Baltimore (WJZ)

Pennsylvania police arrested a man early Tuesday morning in connection with a triple homicide that took place near Cacapon State Park in West Virginia Monday afternoon.

Police made the arrest in Pennsylvania with the help of Morgan County deputies and West Virginia State Police.  Reports identified the alleged shooter as Erick Shute, 32, of Great Cacapon, but formerly of Pennsville, NJ.

A 911 call dispatched the sheriff’s department to Valley High Timber Farm around 4:45 p.m. Monday. Deputies responded on high alert fearing there was an active shooter at the scene.  It turned out the shooter had fled, but deputies discovered three bodies all dead of gunshot wounds.  The names of the men killed have not been released.

Read more: West Virginia Metro News

An Indiana man who told Santa Monica police he was on his way to the L.A. Pride parade in West Hollywood when he was found with with assault rifles and explosives-making materials in his car is scheduled to make an initial court appearance Tuesday, jail records show.

The arrest of James Wesley Howell, 20, raised alarms hours after a gunman killed 50 people at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Fla., in  the worst mass shooting in U.S. history.

Howell was taken into custody after officers found him seated in a car in Santa Monica with three assault rifles, high-capacity magazines, ammunition and a 5-gallon bucket containing chemicals that can be used to make an improvised-explosive device Sunday. Jail records show he is being held on $500,000 bail and is scheduled to be in court Tuesday.

Read more: Los Angeles Times

Islamic State radio on Monday called the U.S.-born gunman who opened fire in a packed nightclub, killing at least 50 people, "one of the soldiers of the caliphate in America."

The attack, which happened early Sunday at Pulse, a gay club in Orlando, is the worst mass shooting in U.S. history.

Federal authorities identified the shooter as Omar Mateen, 29, a New York-born resident of Fort Pierce, Fla., who worked for the security firm G4S. He was killed by police. Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer said 53 people were wounded.

Mateen acknowledged his support for the Islamic State group during a 911 call to local law enforcement from the nightclub, Orlando FBI chief Ron Hopper said. Investigators have yet to determine whether the extremist group had any direct role in the attack.

Read more:  USA Today

The photo from Omar Mateen’s high school yearbook is hardly remarkable - a toothy, dimpled smile with a peach-fuzz mustache below a mop of black hair.

His transformation from high school football player to perpetrator of America's worst mass shooting raises questions about whether red flags were missed over the depth of his apparent sympathies with Muslim extremists.

As families of the victims grieved and the nation recoiled at the scale of yet another mass shooting, a picture began to emerge of the 29-year-old killer as a quiet, devout person who in recent years displayed a hateful and violent streak.

Early on Sunday, he stormed a packed gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida, with a handgun and AR-15 semi-automatic rifle, fatally shooting 50 people before police killed him. Fifty-three others were wounded, many critically.

His ex-wife, Sitora Yusufiy, described him as "bipolar," and emotionally disturbed with a violent temper. She said she had been beaten and otherwise physically abused by Mateen during outbursts in which he would "express hatred towards everything". She was "rescued" by family members just four months into a stormy marriage that began in 2009 and ended in divorce, she said.

"He would often get into fights with his parents, but as I was the only one in his life most of the violence was directed towards me,” she told reporters in Boulder, Colorado outside a home where she was staying.

Read more:  Reuters