South Carolina white supremacist who spoke of his adoration of D - FOX Carolina 21

South Carolina white supremacist who spoke of his adoration of Dylann Roof pleads guilty to federal charge

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Benjamin McDowell (File) Benjamin McDowell (File)
COLUMBIA, SC (FOX Carolina) -

A South Carolina white supremacist who said he admired Charleston church shooter Dylann Roof has pled guilty in federal court, United States Attorney Beth Drake stated Tuesday.

Benjamin Thomas Samuel McDowell, 30, of Conway pled guilty to being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition.

The FBI became aware of McDowell’s “escalating white supremacist views on social media where McDowell advocated violence against non-whites and even expressed admiration for Dylann Roof and the extreme acts of violence perpetrated by him,” Drake said in a news release.

The FBI was particularly concerned about McDowell’s comments made about a synagogue that made investigators feel the site may be a target for potential violence.

McDowell also expressed an interest in buying a gun on social media, and undercover FBI agents posing as white supremacists set up a sting to capture McDowell.

“McDowell and the undercover agent engaged in multiple recorded conversations during which McDowell reaffirmed his respect for Dylann Roof and spoke generally about committing acts of violence against people of the Jewish and Muslim faith,” Drake said.

Agents arrested him in a Myrtle Beach hotel parking lot after selling him a Glock handgun and hollow-point ammunition for $109.

McDowell had been convicted of a felony which prohibits him from owning guns or ammo.

McDowell may be sentenced to up to 10 years in prison and a fine of $250,000. He will be sentenced at a later date.

PREVIOUSLY - Man accused of planning attack 'in the spirit of Dylann Roof' transferred to NY facility, mental evaluation extended

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