MORGANTON, N.C. (WBTV) – The father of a Morganton teen accused of trying to help ISIS told a 911 operator in April that his son had poured gasoline in the house and was destroying religious articles and figurines.
A Burke County teenager is accused of plotting to attack Americans in support of ISIL.
“I don’t know if it’s ISIS or what,” said Rich Sullivan about his son, Justin. He told the 911 dispatcher that his son had destroyed things before, but it had gotten to the breaking point.
“We’re afraid to leave the house,” he said.
That call and the subsequent investigation led federal authorities to begin looking into the 19-year-old’s actions. Since April, undercover agents became involved. They reported that the teenager wanted a silencer for an AR-15 assault rifle that he planned to buy at a Hickory gun show last weekend.
According to federal court documents, Sullivan indicated to the undercover agent that he planned to kill as many as 1,000 Americans and send a video tape to the Islamic State Group.
In the 911 call that his father made in April, the teen can be heard in the background.
“Why are you trying to say I’m a terrorist?” the teenager asked. “They’re gonna put me in jail my whole life and I’m gonna die in jail.”
Justin Sullivan was arrested Friday evening. He faces charges of attempting to provide material support to a designated foreign terrorist organization, receipt of a silencer with intent to commit a felony, and possession of an unregistered silencer.
If convicted on all counts, he could face up to 40 years in prison.
Justin Sullivan went before a judge in Charlotte on Monday to be arraigned on the charges. He will go before a judge in Asheville on Wednesday for a bond hearing.
Rich Sullivan told WBTV on Monday that he is upset with his son.
“I cannot forgive what he planned and I do not condone it, but I , we, love him,” the father said.
Rich Sullivan is a retired Marine and pointed to the American flag flying in front of his house. “I’m true blue, so that was the number one thing.”
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