Lloyd Woodson was apprehended in Branchburg, New Jersey when a clerk in a convenience store called police about 4 a.m. this morning. Woodson was wearing a bulletproof vest and carrying a semiautomatic Bushmaster rifle hidden under his green, military-style jacket. According to the Somerset county Prosecutor, police found a "Middle Eastern-style headdress" in his hotel room. FOXNews is not reporting the "headdress." The FBI jumped right out there and said "Woodson has no known terrorism links." He was a U.S. Navy deserter, however. Update 1-27-10 below. Update 1-29-10 below.
Woodson, 43, was staying at the Red Mill Inn in Branchburg. Police found another Bushmaster rifle in his hotel room. Both of the rifles had defaced serial numbers. They also found maps of an unnamed military facility, a 37 mm Cobray grenade launcher, another bulletproof vest, a police scanner, and "hundreds of rounds of .50-caliber and .308 caliber ammunition, and a night-vision scope.
Woodson was arrested and held in the Somerset County Jail on charges of unlawful possession of weapons, possession of prohibited weapons, resisting arrest and obstruction of justice. He is due in court tomorrow at 1:30 p.m. Bail has not been set.
The federal government’s Joint Terrorism Task Force quickly joined the investigation into Lloyd R. Woodson, 43, who had been staying at a Branchburg motel since last week.
Mixed in among Woodson’s belongings, the prosecutor said, was a Middle Eastern, red-and-white traditional headdress.
Forrest said his office reached out to the Joint Terrorism Task Force — a partnership of federal, state and local agencies administered by the Department of Justice — and that the agency had assigned an investigator from the FBI and another from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco Firearms and Explosives.
Forrest, citing security risks, declined to identify the military base or the civilian community depicted on Woodson’s maps. He said the civilian neighborhood was not in New Jersey.The U.S. Navy said Woodson joined their service in 1988. He deserted in April 1989. Eight years later he was located, returned to "Navy custody," but discharged one month later in August 1997. In the report linked above, it is not clear what punishment, if any, he received for his 8 years on the lam.
My guess is, authorities will tiptoe around this. Schematics for a U.S. Military base, a grenade launcher. a cadre of weapons, and a traditional Middle-Eastern headdress - owned by a Navy deserter, and there is no link to terrorism? I can't wait to hear about his emails to far away radical imams (scarcasm).
Lloyd Woodson was arraigned on Tuesday, January 26, 2010.
A New Jersey state judge on Tuesday set bail for a weapons charge at $75,000. Federal authorities said Tuesday that they had also charged Woodson and that he has a 1997 weapons conviction.
This is interesting. Woodson's wife (not ex-wife) said he threatened and abandoned her, but she doesn't think he would hurt anyone!
In 2008, Woodson's wife, Tracey Everett, sought a protective order against him, saying he deserted her and her children and threatened her. She said Tuesday that she does not think Woodson would hurt anyone.
"He's just a loner. He just needs psychological counseling," she said.