Texas man accused of threatening conservative convention
SAN ANTONIO (AP) — A Texas man remained jailed Sunday authorities accused him of making threats against a convention of young conservative activists held last month in Florida.
Alejandro Richard Velasquez Gomez, 19, of San Antonio, was arrested earlier this month after FBI agents alleged he posted threats on social media to carry out a mass attack on the Turning Point USA Student Action Summit convention.
The event was held from July 22 through July 24 in Tampa. Turning Point is a Donald Trump-aligned group that organizes young people on college campuses into conservative activism.
FBI agents allege Velasquez posted on Instagram that the first day of the convention would be “the day of retribution the day I will have revenge against all of humanity,” according to a criminal complaint filed in federal court in San Antonio.
Velasquez had bought a plane ticket to fly from Austin to Tampa on July 22 but canceled the ticket the night before his flight, FBI agents said.
According to the complaint, agents said they believed Velasquez had planned an attack similar to a violent rampage in 2014 in which Elliot Rodger, 22, killed six students and wounded more than a dozen others near the University of California, Santa Barbara, before killing himself.
The complaint did not clarify why the event was allegedly targeted, but Tampa police took the threat seriously and obtained an arrest warrant.
Velasquez was arrested in San Antonio and charged with making threatening interstate communications. He was also charged with possession of child pornography for images allegedly found on his phone.
An attorney for Velasquez didn’t immediately reply to an email seeking comment Sunday.