Alex Constantine - May 6, 2012
By Jadiann Thompson
CBS5AZ.com, May 4, 2012
3MARICOPA, AZ (CBS5) - J.T. Ready is the man accused of gunning down three people and a baby Wednesday and is known as a neo-Nazi and border vigilante. This week, CBS 5 News learned he was tied to domestic violence, but Friday the FBI confirmed that Ready was the subject of a domestic terrorism investigation.
James Turgal, the FBI special agent in charge of the Phoenix Division, said the investigation was connected to Ready's ties with a white supremacist group called the National Socialist Movement.
Friday, a CBS 5 News team talked with the NSM's director of Region 11, Harry Hughes.
"Any clue why they would be investigating your friend, J.T. Ready?" we asked.
"I couldn't tell you," he said.
Hughes said he had no knowledge of an FBI investigation into the man he called his close friend, Ready. But the FBI is being very clear that they were looking at Ready for reasons unrelated to Wednesday's shooting and say they were looking at him as a potential domestic terrorist.
"The information or allegations came to the FBI regarding potential criminal activity engaged in by J.T. Ready," said Turgal.
Turgal said the investigation is still active, and according to the FBI, it links back to Ready's former involvement with the NSM.
When we asked Hughes about Ready's involvement with NSM, he simply replied, "He's not a member of our organization." Then we asked Hughes if he was being investigated by the FBI. He replied, "Not to the best of my knowledge."
But Hughes said he was visited twice by FBI agents in the past two days who were asking about Ready and looking through belongings of Ready's that Hughes had been storing. He showed us into a shed that the FBI searched and described the things inside as "blankets, clothing, sheets." He said he had nothing to hide.