A Delaware man convicted for his role in a plot to kidnap Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer was sentenced to 16 years in prison on Tuesday (December 27), NBC News reports.
Adam Fox was convicted in August of conspiracy to commit kidnapping and to use a weapon of mass destruction in relation to a planned attack on Whitmer, who was targeted by far-right groups opposing her policies intended limit the spread of COVID-19 in 2020.
Jurors had previously failed to come to verdicts against Fox and co-defendant Barry Croft, which led to a mistrial ruling prior to a decisive second trial.
U.S. District Judge Robert Jonker questioned whether Fox was the true “natural leader” in the kidnapping plot, which would have resulted in a life sentence in Tuesday’s ruling.
“I don’t think life is needed to achieve the important public deterrent factors,” Jonker said while explaining the sentencing via NBC News.
Assistant U.S Attorney Nils Kessler argued that Fox intended to start an all-out war and should have been given a life sentence for his actions.
“They wanted a second Civil War or a revolution,” Kessler told the court on Tuesday via NBC News. “They wanted to ruin everything for everybody.”
The plot stemmed from Whitmer ordering various lockdowns as part of a public effort to combat the spike in positive tests at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020.
Whitmer was the target of numerous far-right groups, which appeared to be supported by then-President Donald Trump, who tweeted “LIBERATE MICHIGAN” at the time.