FBI agent in investigation of Whitmer kidnap plot is charged

KALAMAZOO, Mich. (AP) — An FBI agent who testified about an alleged plot to kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer is facing an assault charge, according to court records.

Richard Trask appeared in a Kalamazoo court Monday and was released. Online records show the alleged offense occurred Sunday.

The court file doesn’t list a defense attorney yet, according to the clerk’s office.

“In accordance with FBI policy, the incident is subject to internal review, and I cannot comment further at this time,” Detroit FBI spokeswoman Mara Schneider said.

Trask has provided details in federal court about an alleged scheme to kidnap Whitmer in retaliation for her orders last year meant to slow the spread of the coronavirus. One man has pleaded guilty and roughly a dozen others are awaiting trial.

“It’s the last thing you want for a major case like this,” said Andy Arena, former head of the FBI office in Detroit. “Any time you give the defense any ammunition it’s not good.”

Trask can’t carry a gun while he’s out on bond, The Detroit News reported.

“If you can’t carry a weapon, then you’re not going to work as a street agent,” Arena told the newspaper. “He’s going to be suspended or put on restricted duty.”

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