A White Supremacist and supporter of Dylann Roof, the gunman who killed nine people at an African-American Church in South Carolina in 2015, was sentenced to nearly three years in federal prison on Wednesday, Reuters reports.
Benjamin McDowell pleaded guilty in March on a single count of being a convicted felon in possession of a firearm.
A U.S. District Court judge in South Carolina gave McDowell the maximum penalty and will serve two years and nine months in prison, per reports.
McDowell had reportedly told an FBI official that he wanted to carry out a large attack “in the spirit of Dylann Roof.”
In a statement, the Department of Justice said that the FBI was made aware of Mcdowell’s plans and that he expressed “escalating white supremacist views on social media.”
During a previous stay in prison, McDowell was affiliated with the hate group called the White Supremacy Extremists, according to Reuters.
He was arrested in 2017 after trying to sell a gun and ammunition to an FBI agent.
Once released from prison, McDowell will be under supervised released for three years.
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Teddy is a multimedia journalist who serves as the culture and political writer for EBONY. His work has appeared in NBC's Owned and Operated stations, as well as DNAInfo, which covered local neighborhood news in New York City. He received his Masters in Journalism from the Craig Newmark School of Journalism at CUNY in 2017.