Curtis Wayne Allen

Curtis Wayne Allen is an American convicted of plotting to bomb an apartment complex in Garden City, Kansas, where Muslims from Somalia lived and worshipped.Roxana Hegeman, “Militia members get decades in prison in Kansas bomb plot,” Star Tribune, January 25, 2019, http://www.startribune.com/3-militia-members-face-sentencing-in-kansas-bomb-plot/504848242/. Allen was detained on October 11, 2016 on domestic violence charges. Then three days later, he and two co-conspirators were charged with one count of conspiracy to use a weapon of mass destruction, following an 8-month-long FBI investigation into the group’s activities.“Three Southwest Kansas Men Charged With Plotting to Bomb Somali Immigrants,” Department of Justice, October 14, 2016, https://www.justice.gov/usao-ks/pr/three-southwest-kansas-men-charged-plotting-bomb-somali-immigrants. The men were also later charged with one count of conspiracy against rights. The U.S. Department of Justice considers the charge a hate crime because Allen sought to interfere with the residents’ housing rights due to their race, national origin, and religion.Mitch Smith, “Racist Terror Plot, or Just Idle Talk? Kansas Trial Hinges on the Answer,” New York Times, April 16, 2018, https://www.nytimes.com/2018/04/16/us/kansas-militia-somali-bomb-plot.html. On January 25, 2019, Allen was sentenced to 25 years in prison for the weapons of mass destruction charge and 10 years for the civil rights violation charge, to be served concurrently.“Three Southwest Kansas Men Sentenced to Prison for Plotting to bomb Somali Immigrants in Garden City,” U.S. Department of Justice, January 25, 2019, https://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/three-southwest-kansas-men-sentenced-prison-plotting-bomb-somali-immigrants-garden-city.

Allen and his co-conspirators, Patrick Eugene Stein and Gavin Wayne Wright, called themselves “the Crusaders.” The group’s members espoused sovereign citizen, anti-government, anti-Muslim, and anti-immigrant extremist beliefs.United States of America v. Curtis Wayne Allen, Patrick Eugene Stein, and Gavin Wayne Wright, Criminal Complaint, (D. Kan. 2016), 2, https://www.justice.gov/opa/file/903106/download. The Crusaders were reportedly a subgroup of the anti-government militia Kansas Security Forces (KSF).Oliver Laughland, “Kansas town reels months after foiled mosque bombing: ‘I’m still scared’,” Guardian, February 22, 201, https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/feb/22/kansas-mosque-bomb-plot-muslims-hate-groups. According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, the KSF shares its name with a larger anti-government coalition called the Three Percent Security Force, which claims to have chapters in several states.Stephen Piggott, “3 Men Arrested in Plot to Bomb Kansas Apartment Complex, Mosque Following Election,” Southern Poverty Law Center, October 14, 2016, https://www.splcenter.org/hatewatch/2016/10/14/3-men-arrested-plot-bomb-kansas-apartment-complex-mosque-following-presidential-election. During the trial of Allen, Stein, and Wright, members of KSF testified that they believed the three men were too extreme.Christopher Mathias and Ryan J. Reilly, “These Pro-Trump Extremists Had a Plan To Kill Muslims. How Were They Radicalized?,” Huffington Post, April 18, 2018, https://www.huffpost.com/entry/domestic-terrorism-trial-kansas-trump-militia_n_5ad4e700e4b0edca2cbcb603. The FBI informant said other militia members did not want to join the plot because they believed it would result in everyone “thrown in jail and give militias a bad name.”“Accused Terrorists Were So Extreme They Scared Other Anti-Muslim Bigots,” Huffington Post, March 31, 2018, https://www.huffpost.com/entry/kansas-terror-plot-militia_n_5abd0e8ce4b03e2a5c7a53c9?ncid=engmodushpmg00000004.

According to an FBI affidavit, members of the KSF—including Allen, Wright, and Stein—maintained daily contact over Zello, a mobile app that simulates a push-to-talk walkie-talkie function.United States of America v. Curtis Wayne Allen, Patrick Eugene Stein, and Gavin Wayne Wright, Affidavit in Support of Application for the First Extension of a Mobile Tracker, (D. Kan. 2016), 3 https://www.splcenter.org/sites/default/files/kansas-affidavit-extended.pdf. Allen also shared anti-Muslim content via Facebook.Christopher Mathias and Ryan J. Reilly, “These Pro-Trump Extremists Had a Plan To Kill Muslims. How Were They Radicalized?,” Huffington Post, April 18, 2018, https://www.huffpost.com/entry/domestic-terrorism-trial-kansas-trump-militia_n_5ad4e700e4b0edca2cbcb603.

In June 2016, Stein convened a meeting with the Crusaders and discussed the need to respond to the June 2016 shooting at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida. The next month, the three co-conspirators and a confidential FBI source met at G&G Mobile Home Center, a business owned by Wright and where Allen worked.United States of America v. Curtis Wayne Allen, Patrick Eugene Stein, and Gavin Wayne Wright, Criminal Complaint, (D. Kan. 2016), 6, https://www.justice.gov/opa/file/903106/download. During the meeting, Stein and Allen suggested various targets for an attack, including Muslim-occupied residences and places of worship, city or county commission meetings, public officials, landlords leasing property to Muslims, and organizations providing aid to Muslim refugees.United States of America v. Curtis Wayne Allen, Patrick Eugene Stein, and Gavin Wayne Wright, Criminal Complaint, (D. Kan. 2016), 7-8, https://www.justice.gov/opa/file/903106/download.

The three men eventually settled on a plot to attack an apartment complex in Garden City, Kansas, where most of the 120 residents are Muslims from Somalia.Reuters, “Kansas men aimed to kill as many Somalis as possible in terror plot, prosecutor says,” Guardian, April 17, 2018, https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2018/apr/17/kansas-terror-plot-men-kill-somalian-muslims-hate-court-claims. The complex served as a hub for the Somali community and one of the apartments was used as a makeshift mosque.Mitch Smith, “Racist Terror Plot, or Just Idle Talk? Kansas Trial Hinges on the Answer,” New York Times, April 16, 2018, https://www.nytimes.com/2018/04/16/us/kansas-militia-somali-bomb-plot.html. Allen, Wright, and Stein began to stockpile weapons and supplies for explosives, and surveilled the apartment complex.Christopher Mathias and Ryan J. Reilly, “These Pro-Trump Extremists Had a Plan To Kill Muslims. How Were They Radicalized?,” Huffington Post, April 18, 2018, https://www.huffpost.com/entry/domestic-terrorism-trial-kansas-trump-militia_n_5ad4e700e4b0edca2cbcb603.

Allen was the self-appointed author of the group’s manifesto, which he intended to release concurrently with the planned attack, according to a recording provided by the FBI source.United States of America v. Curtis Wayne Allen, Patrick Eugene Stein, and Gavin Wayne Wright, Affidavit in Support of Application for the First Extension of a Mobile Tracker, (D. Kan. 2016), 8, https://www.splcenter.org/sites/default/files/kansas-affidavit-extended.pdf. In the manifesto, Allen calls on others to “wake up” and “take action” against the U.S. government for “not enforcing our borders… bringing in Muslims by the thousands.”Curtis Allen, “Manifesto,” Southern Poverty Law Center, December 3, 2018, https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/5694091-Manifesto.html.

According to the criminal complaint, Allen volunteered to build the bomb to be used in the Garden City apartment complex attack and displayed knowledge of explosive components.United States of America v. Curtis Wayne Allen, Patrick Eugene Stein, and Gavin Wayne Wright, Criminal Complaint, (D. Kan. 2016), 8, https://www.justice.gov/opa/file/903106/download. The plan included obtaining and filling four vehicles with explosives, parking them in each of the four corners of the apartment complex, and detonating the explosives remotely with a cellphone. The plot also included potentially enlisting other KSF members in different states to purchase prepaid cellphones.United States of America v. Curtis Wayne Allen, Patrick Eugene Stein, and Gavin Wayne Wright, Criminal Complaint, (D. Kan. 2016), 8-9, https://www.justice.gov/opa/file/903106/download. Prosecutors said the men planned to launch the attack on November 9, 2016, a day after the U.S. presidential elections.Mitch Smith, “Racist Terror Plot, or Just Idle Talk? Kansas Trial Hinges on the Answer,” New York Times, April 16, 2018, https://www.nytimes.com/2018/04/16/us/kansas-militia-somali-bomb-plot.html.

On October 11, 2016, local police responded to a domestic battery call at the home Allen shared with his girlfriend. By the time authorities arrived, Allen had fled the scene. His girlfriend recounted the incident and alerted officers to the fact that Allen possessed firearms. Police officers were able to track down Allen’s vehicle to the G&G Mobile Home Center, where they followed him and arrested him with weapons in his vehicle.United States of America v. Curtis Wayne Allen, Patrick Eugene Stein, and Gavin Wayne Wright, Criminal Complaint, (D. Kan. 2016), 11, https://www.justice.gov/opa/file/903106/download. Allen’s girlfriend later said she witnessed a white powdery substance being produced on the counter at the G&G Mobile Home Center, similar to what was produced in bomb-making videos the two had viewed on YouTube.United States of America v. Curtis Wayne Allen, Patrick Eugene Stein, and Gavin Wayne Wright, Criminal Complaint, (D. Kan. 2016), 11, https://www.justice.gov/opa/file/903106/download. Based on her description of the components she had witnessed, law enforcement determined Allen was manufacturing a homemade explosive known as hexamethylene triperoxide diamine (HMTD).United States of America v. Curtis Wayne Allen, Patrick Eugene Stein, and Gavin Wayne Wright, Criminal Complaint, (D. Kan. 2016), 12, https://www.justice.gov/opa/file/903106/download.

On October 12, 2016, the FBI conducted searches at Allen’s residence and found weapons. Authorities also searched the G&G Mobile Home Center and discovered a possible detonator and other explosive materials.United States of America v. Curtis Wayne Allen, Patrick Eugene Stein, and Gavin Wayne Wright, Criminal Complaint, (D. Kan. 2016), 12, https://www.justice.gov/opa/file/903106/download. Allen’s co-conspirators Stein and Wright were arrested on October 14, and the three men were charged with one count of conspiracy to use a weapon of mass destruction.“Three Southwest Kansas Men Charged With Plotting to Bomb Somali Immigrants,” Department of Justice, October 14, 2016, https://www.justice.gov/usao-ks/pr/three-southwest-kansas-men-charged-plotting-bomb-somali-immigrants. They were later charged with an additional one count of conspiracy against rights by planning to interfere with the housing rights of residents at the Garden City apartment complex.Mitch Smith, “Racist Terror Plot, or Just Idle Talk? Kansas Trial Hinges on the Answer,” New York Times, April 16, 2018, https://www.nytimes.com/2018/04/16/us/kansas-militia-somali-bomb-plot.html. Allen, Wright, and Stein were convicted on both charges on April 18, 2018.“Three Southwest Kansas Men Sentenced to Prison for Plotting to bomb Somali Immigrants in Garden City,” U.S. Department of Justice, January 25, 2019, https://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/three-southwest-kansas-men-sentenced-prison-plotting-bomb-somali-immigrants-garden-city. On January 25, 2019, Allen was sentenced to 25 years in prison for conspiracy to use a weapon of mass destruction and 10 years for conspiracy to violate civil rights, to be served simultaneously.“Three Southwest Kansas Men Sentenced to Prison for Plotting to bomb Somali Immigrants in Garden City,” U.S. Department of Justice, January 25, 2019, https://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/three-southwest-kansas-men-sentenced-prison-plotting-bomb-somali-immigrants-garden-city.

Extremist entity
Crusaders
Type(s) of Organization:
Militia group
Ideologies and Affiliations:
Anti-government, anti-immigrant, anti-Muslim, sovereign citizen
Position(s):
Attempted bomber

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On June 24, 2017, Tehrik-i Taliban Pakistan (TTP) launched back-to-back explosions at a market in Kurram Agency of Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) in northwest Pakistan. The attack killed 67 people who were shopping in preparation for a religious holiday and wounded 200 others. 

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