Three Arrested in Possible Plot to Harm Obama

By: Associated Press, KUSA, KKCO Email
By: Associated Press, KUSA, KKCO Email

Police have arrested three people they believe are possibly involved a threat against Sen. Barack Obama.

For one of the men, officers found two rifles, ammunition, scopes and drugs following a routine traffic stop on Sunday.

Aurora Police arrested 28-year-old Tharin Gartrell of Lakewood early Sunday morning and he was being held in the Arapahoe County jail. He has a felony criminal record.

A federal official familiar with the investigation told the Associated Press it's premature to say that it was a valid threat or that ``these folks have the ability to carry it out.''

The official spoke on condition of anonymity because the investigation is ongoing.

Obama will be in Denver this week to accept the Democratic Nomination for president.

FBI Spokeswoman Kathy Wright confirms the FBI was investigating the reports but declined to elaborate.

A second man arrested, 34 year old, Shawn Robert Adolf at Cherry Creek Hotel in Glendale on Sunday. Aurora Police said at a news conference Tuesday night hat when police went to his hotel, the man jumped out a sixth floor window, injuring himself. He ran into nearby bushes where officers apprehended him. Authorities say he had weapons. Adolf is being held on a $1,000,000 bond.

Aurora Police say the third arrest on Sunday morning was of 33 year old Nathan Johnson.

At least one of the men made some kind of threat against Sen. Barack Obama.

Sources tell NBC the two men had tattoos and jewelry popular with white supremacists.

At the Rockies Inn, investigators made contact with a number of people tied to Gartrell's arrest.

Authorities tell NBC News they are skeptical there was anything other than some kind of general animosity and no actual plan to do anything.

"This is a methamphetamine and firearms case that arose from a traffic stop made by an Aurora Police officer. Firearms and methamphetamine were seized, and a number of individual are in state custody. The matter continues to be under investigation. We'll provide more information at 4 p.m. tomorrow," said U.S. Attorney Troy Eid.

Officials tell NBC the guns, ammunition and scopes were concerning because of the hour of the arrest and the suspect's previous criminal history.

"There is no reason for someone [with a criminal record] to have rifles with scopes," said an unidentified source.

An official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, says there is concern about the arrest considering the Democratic National Convention kicked off in Denver on Monday.

People convicted of a felony are not allowed to possess guns.

Gartrell faces charges of drug possession and possession of materials to make amphetamines.

"Federal agencies are working together to do a follow up investigation after the arrest," said the official. "There may be pending firearms charges."

Those charges will likely be federal charges.

Gartrell has numerous drug-related arrests.

In December 2006, he pleaded guilty to felony possession of a controlled substance and received a deferred sentence


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