Northwest Indiana man sentenced 15 years for planning Pulse-style attack


CROWN POINT, Ind. — A man from Crown Point, Ind., just 25 miles from Chicago, was sentence to 15 years for planning an attack like that at the Pulse Nightclub in 2016, local media reported.

The Times of Northwest Indiana reported that Marlonn Hicks, 31, was sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge Joseph Van Bokkelen on charges of distributing information regarding the manufacture and use of explosives with the intent that the information be used for and in furtherance of a crime of violence.

From the Times of Northwest Indiana:

Hicks pleaded guilty in fall 2016 to sending bomb-making instructions online earlier that year to a government informant with the intent that an attack be carried out in the name of ISIS.

“The Department of Justice is committed to investigating and prosecuting terrorist threats against our homeland,” Assistant Attorney General John Demers said in a news release. “The defendant plotted to conduct an attack on U.S. soil and, with today’s sentence, he is being held accountable for his actions.”

“The online communications by Mr. Hicks drew swift attention from our agents, who had identified and monitored him early in his path to radicalization,” FBI Special Agent-in-Charge Grant Mendenhall said in a news release. “As this radicalization deepened, the FBI continued to monitor Mr. Hicks’ activity and took action to mitigate any threats ensuring the public’s safety.”

According to the documents in this case, Hicks rapidly transformed from a vocal online supporter of ISIS to someone planning a terrorist act.