Red Bank man charged in alleged terrorism plot

Red Bank man charged in alleged terrorism plot

August 22nd, 2012 by Kate Belz in News

John Lewis Mills

John Lewis Mills

An apparent alcohol-fueled act of burning passion erupted into terrorism charges Tuesday for a Red Bank man.

Police say John L. Mills, 24, planned to lob two Molotov cocktails at Red Bank's police station in retaliation for his girlfriend's arrest for her second DUI this year.

Mills, who was arrested about 3 a.m. while sitting in his car at a business less than 100 yards from the police station, also was charged with DUI and two counts of prohibited weapons.

"I think people have been shocked here," said Red Bank Police Chief Tim Christol. "This kind of incident is very rare. He not only had the intent, he had the means and there is his proximity to the department. It's obvious he was very specific about his target. He was wanting to retaliate against the police."

Tennessee law stipulates that an act of terrorism involves a specific intent to disrupt the business of a government.

Red Bank police Officer Steve Satterwhite approached Mills around 3:15 a.m. after he noticed Mills' truck parked in the business' parking lot. Satterwhite noticed Mills' blurred eyes and slurred speech and arrested him after he failed all sobriety tests, according to an arrest report.

While searching the truck, the officer found two glass containers each filled with gasoline with newspaper stuffed into the tops.

"I then ask what he was going to do with these bottles; he replied that he just wanted to see an explosion," Satterwhite's report reads.

When the officer asked why, Mills replied because a Red Bank officer "just arrested my [expletive] girlfriend."

A Red Bank police officer had arrested Mills' girlfriend, Kylie Jackson, on DUI charges around 1:30 a.m. that night. Mills was in the car with Jackson at the time, Christol explained.

Reached Tuesday, Jackson's mother said her daughter would not have any comment about the matter.

After Millls' statements, Red Bank Police contacted the Chattanooga Police Department bomb squad, which disposed of the two containers.

"A Molotov cocktail would have caused significant damage," said Christol, who said the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives was also looking into the incident.

Christol said no one was inside the police building at the time of Mills' arrest, but officers were coming in and out throughout the night.

Mills currently is being held in jail without bond. A court date has not yet been set.

Hamilton County court records show Mills has been charged with a dozen traffic-related offenses since 2005. In 2006, he was charged with DUI and drinking under age.