U.S. Attorney’s Office for The Northern District of Ohio Celebrates Funding Announced During Domestic Violence Awareness Month
Elizabeth Lecron, 24, was sentenced today to 180 months of incarceration and lifetime supervision for her involvement in planning two terrorist attacks, including an attack at a local Toledo bar. During the sentencing hearing, Judge James G. Carr called Lecron’s actions “monstrous.” Her co-defendant and live-in boyfriend, Vincent Armstrong, has pleaded guilty for his role in the scheme and will be sentenced on December 10, 2019.
“This defendant was deadly serious about plotting for an attack on Toledo and an interstate pipeline,” said United States Attorney Justin Herdman. “She stands convicted of a terrorism offense and will spend the next fifteen years in a federal prison. When she is released, she will spend the rest of her life under intense supervision by a federal court. Today’s sentence reflects the severity of her conduct and is a recognition of the continued efforts by law enforcement to protect the public from all violent threats.”
“Elizabeth Lecron's lengthy incarceration followed by a lifetime of supervised release is more than justified for her despicable plan to commit mass murder in our city,” stated FBI Special Agent in Charge Eric B. Smith. “The investigation, prosecution, and her sentence demonstrates the importance of the continued partnership between the public and law enforcement, as well as a strong US Attorney's Office willing to pursue warranted charges that will keep dangerous people like Elizabeth Lecron under law enforcement's watchful eye. It should also serve as a reminder to others that law enforcement will pursue criminals bent on attacking fellow citizens with every tool at our disposal.”
As set out in court filings and during court hearings, Lecron and Armstrong met and started dating in early 2018. Shortly after meeting, Lecron expressed her interest in mass murderers and introduced Armstrong to an online group called the “True Crime Community.” This group fixated and lionized mass murderers and posted extremely graphic images, videos, and sayings. They two became immersed in this subculture, including take a trip in August 2018 to visit the sights related to the Columbine High School shooting to pay tribute to the shooters and Lecron writing numerous letters to Dylann Roof.
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.”
Separately, on December 8, 2018, Lecron purchased two pounds of black powder and hundreds of screws intending that they be used in a bombing of a pipeline in Georgia.
This conduct took place between April 2018 and December 10, 2018.
This case was investigated by the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Michael Freeman and Tracey Tangeman.