The family of New Year’s plotter Emanuel Lutchman, arrested by the FBI as a “pro-ISIS” extremist who planned to attack a Rochester bar, say he was mentally ill and easily manipulated, and posed no risk to carry out an attack on his own.
Lutchman was in contact with an FBI informant who convinced him that if he wanted to join ISIS he needed to “prove himself” with a domestic attack. The informant also took him to Walmart to buy knives and ski masks for a potential attack.
His father, Omar Lutchman, said his son was impressionable and “easily manipulated,” and that “first he was a Blood, then he was a Crip, then he became a Muslim.” He had apparently been kicked out of the sports bar that was to be the target for panhandling.
The complaint against Lutchman for the “plot” also suggests that he was unlikely to pull off any attacks on his own, noting that he told the FBI informant he didn’t have the money to buy a knife, and managed to convince him to take him shopping at Walmart to get some.