Former Ohio guard faces new charges after threatening Jewish school

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A former National Guardsman who was previously charged with making terrorist threats against a Jewish school in Columbus now faces federal charges for manufacturing and selling untraceable “ghost” weapons.

Thomas Develin, 24, who previously lived in far north Columbus, was scheduled to appear in U.S. District Court on Wednesday afternoon. He faces five federal charges, including unlawful possession of a machine gun and conducting business without a license.

Previous report: Security guard charged with threatening Columbus Torah Academy

According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Columbus, Develin was originally arrested in March after making threats on an online social media platform regarding Columbus Torah Academy, where he worked as a security guard.

After his arrest, federal agents searched Develin’s apartment and vehicle and found more than 25 firearms. Prosecutors allege Develin was creating so-called ghost guns, which are firearms made in whole or in part with a 3D printer. These guns have no serial number and are virtually untraceable.

Develin is also accused of possessing homemade conversion devices that would turn an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle and Glock-type pistols into fully automatic machine guns. Develin allegedly told investigators that he started making ghost guns in 2020 and intended to sell them for profit, which is a violation of state gun law.

Previous report: Ohio National Guard arrested for threatening to crash plane into Anheuser-Busch factory

A forensic search of Develin’s laptop revealed at least 87 searches for the terrorist attack on a mosque in Christchurch, New Zealand, and according to court records, Develin posted photos on social media in December of a modified AR-15 style rifle that mimicked the firearm used in that shooting.

Develin, who is a former member of the Ohio National Guard, has also posted a number of anti-Semitic and violent posts on social media, primarily on Snapchat and Discord.

On March 15, Develin posted in a Discord group chat that included other members of the Ohio National Guard that “if the military really decides to get tough on extremists, they’ll have to deport at least half of between us”. according to court records.

Other discoveries, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office, included a photo released in September where Develin posted an image of the school where he worked and said, “Having an internal debate that if an active shooter comes in, I could just join him.”

Other statements allegedly made on social media by Develin include:

  • In November, Develin reportedly posted a video in which he sniffed a gun and said, “This one smells like dead Jews.”
  • In January, Develin is accused of posting a photo of a synagogue in New Albany with the text: “The holocaust (sic) did not take place” and “If anything, I will shout that 6 million weren’t enough.”
  • A post in February of a meme that read ‘Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither was my sexual assault record’
  • A second meme saying “If your enemy is a female soldier, you must rape her.”
  • A Feb. 8 post saying he was “so radicalized against women” that he didn’t know “how to act rationally around them when one of them decides it’s a good idea” to talk to him .
  • A Feb. 5 post in which Develin said “we’re about to hunt some (racial epithets) on night patrol in Columbus.
  • Develin also published an article on “selling machine guns to criminals and gangbangers”.

Federal authorities said Develin used the alias “Patrick Bateman” online, using the name of the narrator of “American Psycho” by Bret Easton Ellis.

Develin also reportedly posted online about the commission of terrorist attacks at John Glenn Columbus International Airport and the Budweiser manufacturing plant, as well as the murder of a Morgan County Sheriff’s Office deputy. and the family of this deputy.

Additional allegations in the 48-page affidavit in support of the federal charges, which was unsealed on Wednesday, include allegations that Develin posted videos of himself pointing a gun at a law enforcement vehicle. ‘order.

Develin is also accused of going to a home in Chesterhill, Ohio, located in Morgan County, and hiding or destroying several pieces of evidence, including ghost guns, parts of firearms fire and a shock butt, a device that allows more rounds to be fired than on a traditional firearm.

“It’s still the same charge after the first crime,” Develin reportedly posted.

A second man, James Meade, 26, of Chesterhill, also faces charges in Franklin County Common Pleas Court for making threats against the Budweiser manufacturing plant.

Meade’s address is listed in court records as the address where Develin allegedly hid and destroyed evidence.

The charges against Develin in the Franklin County Court of Common Pleas stand and are not superseded by the federal charges.

Develin had posted $200,000 bond and lived in Waverly. He was arrested by federal authorities ahead of his court appearance on Wednesday.

Dispatch will update this story with additional information.

bbruner@dispatch.com

@bethany_bruner

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