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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Northern District of Ohio

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Akron man indicted for making threats involving explosives and killing police officers

An Akron man was indicted in federal court for making threats involving explosives and interstate threats stemming from posts he made on Facebook in which he referenced making explosives and shooting police officers.

Wesley B. Esper, 33, was indicted on one count of interstate threats involving explosives and one count of interstate communications of threats.

Esper made numerous postings on Facebook on June 21 which included messages such as: “Kids the gov. is wrong and it’s time. Stand up fight. Ohio is the key state. Shoot cops and politicians and any corrupt perversion of our liberty to life and freedom. Be John Dillinger, be a cowboy and don’t give up the revolution. Am will to help assemble automatics and bombs. Thank you and bless. Tyrants and alike must answer to patriots and the people,” according to the indictment.

Another post stated: “Ohio is the most corrupt and has sold off our public institutions. Go out and shoot your governor. That piece of (expletive) should hang along with many local authoritarian creatures. Thank you. Please send me pics of your progress…Strategic acts of violence to put these tyrants in their place,” according to the indictment.

If convicted, the defendant’s sentence will be determined by the Court after a review of factors unique to this case, including the defendant’s prior criminal record, if any, the defendant’s role in the offense and the characteristics of the violations.  In all cases, the sentence will not exceed the statutory maximum and, in most cases, it will be less than the maximum.

The investigation was conducted by the Massillon Police Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. It being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Teresa Riley.

An indictment is only a charge and is not evidence of guilt.  A defendant is entitled to a fair trial in which it will be the government’s burden to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

Topic(s): 
Violent Crime
Component(s): 
Updated July 18, 2018