Investigations uncover Randolph County man’s alleged plot to attack federal courthouse

ELKINS, W. Va. — A Randolph County man is being detained on federal charges related to plotting attacks on a festival and a federal courthouse in Elkins.

Jonathan Leo Schrader

Jonathan Leo Schrader, 30, of Elkins –also referred to as “Hobo John”– was booked into Tygarts Valley Regional Jail on February 14 as a federal inmate, and will remain in custody pending future decisions made regarding prosecution.

According to an affidavit filed by the FBI, several plots devised by Schrader were brought forth by a witness to the Randolph County Sheriff’s Department.

The cooperative witness told authorities, Schrader allegedly acquired C-4 plastic explosives from a juvenile –whose father used the devices for a previous job– in exchange for marijuana and the promise of a future supply.

Schrader then allegedly planned to detonate the explosives at the Mountain State Forest Festival and Jennings Randolph Federal Center and use snipers to shoot first responders. In an additional plot, he allegedly wanted to use the explosives to break into the Davis Trust Bank and steal money.

To give credence to the threats, the witness relayed Schrader’s frequent rhetoric against the government and law enforcement. They also recounted three separate incidents in which Schrader allegedly manufactured an AK-47 to fire automatically, blew up a tree stump with C-4 and allegedly placed a fake pipe bomb near the State Police barracks in Elkins to gauge the response protocol.

Upon gathering the testimony, the Sheriff’s Department took the case to the FBI.

After further investigation conducted by the FBI, State Police and the Sheriff’s department, a search warrant was issued for Schrader’s residence and nearby buildings where authorities were able to seize a stick and a half of C-4.

A detention hearing and preliminary hearing has been scheduled for 11 a.m. Friday at the federal courthouse in Clarksburg.

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