Published: Thu, April 11, 2019
Global Media | By Garry Long

US foils alleged plot to drive stolen truck into pedestrians in Maryland

US foils alleged plot to drive stolen truck into pedestrians in Maryland

Henry faces a sentence of 10 years in prison regarding the stolen vehicle.

A day later, the stolen U-Haul was found in National Harbor, a bustling development along the Potomac in Maryland across from Alexandria, Virginia, that features bars and restaurants, shops, a Ferris wheel, a luxury hotel and residential apartments.

A Maryland man was charged Monday for stealing a van, which he allegedly planned to drive into a crowd of pedestrians in a Daesh-inspired attack. Henry meant to die in an attack and had recently spent time with relatives because he thought he wouldn't see them again, according to the prosecutor.

His name is Rondell Henry and he's a computer engineer who walked off his job last month, stole a truck and began looking for places where he could recreate the Nice, France attack in the Washington, DC area.

Two weeks ago, police in Arlington, Va. were notified that a leased U-Haul had been stolen from aa mall marking garage.

A court filing by prosecutors Monday says Henry watched Islamic State propaganda videos of foreign terrorists beheading civilians and fighting overseas, admiring their actions and considering them courageous.

Prosecutors detailed the terrorism-related accusations Monday in a detention memo and argued that Henry should remain in jail pending trial.

A detention hearing is scheduled for Tuesday in US District Court in Greenbelt, Maryland, before US Magistrate Judge Thomas M. DiGirolamo.

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"For two years, Henry has harbored "hatred" for those who do not practice the Muslim faith", the government memo said, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.

The Justice Department said that before setting his sights on National Harbor, Henry wanted to try driving the truck into pedestrians at Dulles International Airport in Virginia.

He also watched videos of foreign terrorists beheading civilians and fighting overseas. He allegedly planned to conduct a similar attack to the truck attack in Nice, France in 2016. According to a motion for detention, Henry is alleged to have been inspired by ISIS, "prepared to die for his cause" and to have stolen a vehicle in order to "use it to commit mass murder in the pattern established by ISIS". "I wasn't going to stop", Henry told police who questioned him after his arrest, prosecutors said. Police found the vehicle parked a few spaces away from where the U-Haul was stolen.

He then allegedly proceeded to the National Harbor.

Police found the U-Haul by the following morning.

Because the crowds at the National Harbour waterfront were less, he delayed his plans, the prosecutors said, adding that he broke into a boat and hid there overnight.

Fortunately, police were able to identify the stolen truck and were waiting to arrest Henry when he reappeared to carry out the attack.

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