Self-proclaimed ‘hardcore leftist’ arrested by FBI in plot to carry out revenge attack on protesters at Florida Capitol

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TALLAHASSEE, FL – A former U.S. Army soldier angered over the invasion of the U.S. Capitol has been arrested for plotting an attack against protesters at the Florida State Capitol in revenge.

On Friday, the FBI arrested 33-year-old Daniel Alan Baker on federal charges for allegedly issuing an online call to arms to recruit other “hardcore leftists” to “violently confront” protesters Sunday at Florida’s Capitol in Tallahassee.

Baker allegedly created a Facebook event titled “Defend Tallahassee,” which called for people to take up arms and join him in Tallahassee to attack protesters.

U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Florida Lawrence Keefe issued a statement:

“(Baker) threatened to kidnap and injure others, and he recently issued a call to arms for like-minded individuals to violently confront protesters who are expected to gather at the Florida Capitol.

“Extremists intent on violence from either end of the political and social spectrum must be stopped, and they will be stopped.”

Details of 'Defend Tallahassee' event - Courtesy of the FBI
Details of ‘Defend Tallahassee’ event posted on Facebook – Courtesy of the FBI

Baker, an alleged Antifa supporter who participated in anti-police protests last year around the country, was arrested without incident by FBI agents early Friday with assistance from state and local police.

According to an affidavit filed by the FBI, Baker was using social media to recruit people in a plot to launch an armed assault on a protest planned at the Florida Capitol building. The plot allegedly involved encircling the protesters to trap them.

The affidavit described threats of violence and civil war. The FBI described Baker as anti-Trump, anti-government, anti-white supremacist, and anti-police. Prosecutors said:

“Baker issued a call to arms for like-minded individuals to violently confront protesters gathered at the Florida Capitol this Sunday. He specifically called for others to join him in encircling any protesters and confining them at the Capitol complex using firearms.”

Baker was charged with the federal felony charge to “transmit in interstate or foreign commerce any communication containing any threat to kidnap any person or any threat to injure the person of another.”

Baker appeared before Magistrate Judge Charles A. Stampelos on Friday and was ordered detained in a Tallahassee federal detention center until a court date on January 21.

According to the criminal complaint filed by federal authorities, the FBI was first notified about Baker’s activities in October. The FBI said:

“The FBI was notified that Baker was threatening the use of violence in the United States and was using social media to recruit and train like-minded individuals in furtherance of his Anti-Government or Anti-Authority Violent Extremism Ideology.

“Baker has made multiple violent threats to those he claims are white supremacists, fascists, United States persons with different ideologies than his, and allies of the United States. In addition, BAKER has promoted the killing of United States military officers.”

Baker was enlisted in the United States Army as an airborne infantryman from 2006 to 2007 and was issued an other-than-honorable discharge after he went AWOL prior to deployment to Iraq. From 2007 until 2017, he lived in Tallahassee where he remained homeless and unemployed.

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In 2017, Baker joined the U.S. designated terrorist group People’s Protection Units fighting against both ISIS and the Turkish government in Syria. On social media, Baker called himself a trained sniper for the YPG.

Federal authorities said that Baker returned to the United States in April 2019 with a plan to lure off of military bases and kill Turkish pilots training in the United States. The plan was never carried out.

Baker traveled across the U.S. participating in protests that have resulted in violence including the CHOP/CHAZ Autonomous Zone in Seattle.

According to prosecutors, Baker continued to threaten violence in the United States until his arrest:

“(Baker) has made multiple threats to those who he claims to be white supremacists, fascists,  United States persons with different ideologies than his, and allies of the United States.

“Baker has promoted the killing of United States military officers. In addition, Baker informed his followers on social media to prepare for war.”

Baker owns several firearms and has recently posted on social media his desire to purchase more, including an AK-47 semi-automatic rifle.

Baker allegedly showed off his violent streak when he tried to raise money on GoFundMe to attend EMT training in November. He posted on his Facebook page:

“I swear on god y’all (sic) if I can’t raise this money, I will start robbing the rich and pedophiles too. This is my last fundraiser before I commit to organized crime. I’ve gotten do (sic) much toxic resistance and so little help from asking nicely that I’ve come to the conclusion that it doesn’t work.

“I’m not asking any more (sic) and I’m done being nice. I will pay for this one way or another and I’m willing to do anything to anyone.”

Poster posted by Baker - Courtesy of the FBI
Poster posted by Baker – Courtesy of the FBI

On January 14, Baker posted a poster titled “Call to arms January 26th!” as a comment to a Tallahassee television news station article about how the Tallahassee police will be staffed and prepared for protests leading up to Inauguration Day. The poster said:

“Armed racists have planted the Confederate flag in America’s Capitol…We need all Florida residents to rise up! Here in Florida, we must encircle terrorists who attack the Capitol! Let them take the Capitol and fight with cops. Surround them and trap them inside!”

“This is an armed coup and can only be stopped by an armed community! If you’re afraid to die fighting the enemy, stay in bed and live.”

Baker’s arrest comes at a time of high alert for capital cities across the United States as the country prepares for the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden on January 20.  Intelligence officials have warned of multiple plots and chatter calling for armed attacks on all 50 state capitals leading up to Wednesday’s inauguration.

 

 

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