Tennessee Citizen Faces Federal Charges in Connection to Metro Courthouse Fire During Protest

A criminal complaint issued today charged Wesley Somers, 25, of Hendersonville, Tennessee, with arson and with malicious destruction of property using fire or explosives.


A criminal complaint issued today charged Wesley Somers, 25, of Hendersonville, Tennessee, with arson and with malicious destruction of property using fire or explosives.

“The Department of Justice will vindicate the First Amendment rights of all Americans to speak, assemble and seek a redress of grievances from their government,” said Assistant Attorney General for National Security John C. Demers.  “We cannot tolerate, however, those who would take advantage of moments of real anguish to endanger the innocent and destroy their property.”

“We will always vigorously defend the right of every individual to assemble and protest,” said U.S. Attorney Don Cochran for the Middle District of Tennessee.  “This is one of our most sacred liberties guaranteed by the First Amendment of our Constitution.  We will also vigorously pursue those who choose to exploit such assemblies and use violence and intimidation in order to change the dynamics of an otherwise peaceful protest.”

The criminal complaint alleges that on the afternoon of May 30, 2020, protesters gathered in downtown Nashville following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis, Minnesota. 

Later in the evening, a number of persons gathered in front of Nashville City Hall, also known as the Metro Courthouse, and using various tools, including crowbars and other objects, began smashing the windows of the premises and spraying graffiti on the Courthouse facade.  

One or more fires were also set inside of the Courthouse at this time.

Numerous video clips and photographs of the destruction at the Courthouse were posted on social media websites, on the websites for news outlets, and on other Internet sites.  

Somers is depicted in video clips and photographs from that evening, shirtless and wearing beige cargo shorts.  In those clips and photographs, Somers—whose distinctive chest tattoos portraying the words “WILD CHILD” and “HARD 2 Love,” among others, are occasionally visible — is depicted attempting to smash windows of the Courthouse with a long object. 

One photograph in particular, depicted Somers holding an unknown accelerant, which had been set on fire, and placing the accelerant through the window of the Courthouse.  

Somers is also depicted in a video clip setting fire to an accelerant and placing it inside a window located on the exterior of the Courthouse. 

Somers was identified by the Metropolitan Nashville Police Department – Specialized Investigation Division, after receiving numerous tips from citizens, and was arrested on state arson charges on May 31. 

If convicted, Somers faces a mandatory minimum of five years and up to 20 years in prison.

Assistant Attorney General Demers and U.S. Attorney Cochran commended the actions of concerned citizens and the efforts of the law enforcement agencies and prosecutors who worked to quickly identify and bring these charges, including the Metropolitan Nashville Police Department; the FBI; the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives; Assistant U.S. Attorney Ben Schrader; and Trial Attorney Justin Sher of the Department’s Counterterrorism Section.

A criminal complaint is merely an accusation.  The defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.     

Justice.gov (June 2020) Tennessee Man Faces Federal Arson Charges in Connection to Metro Courthouse Fire During Protest

AMBER Alert Update 3/6/2020: Evelyn Mae Boswell

During the search, investigators discovered human remains believed to be those of the missing 15-month-old girl. The remains will be sent for an autopsy and a positive identification.


*Updated on 3/6/20 at 10:10 (ET) to reflect the following new developments in the investigation.

This evening, as part of the ongoing investigation into the disappearance of Evelyn Mae Boswell, and acting on new information developed in the case, TBI Agents and Detectives with the Sullivan County Sheriff’s Office searched a property belonging to a family member of Evelyn’s mother, Megan Boswell, in the 500 block of Muddy Creek Road in Blountville. During the search, investigators discovered human remains believed to be those of the missing 15-month-old girl. The remains will be sent for an autopsy and a positive identification.

The TBI, Sullivan County Sheriff’s Office, and the FBI would like to thank the public for their support during the two-week AMBER Alert search for Evelyn Boswell.

The investigation remains active and ongoing at this time.

*Updated on 3/4/20 at 1:40 p.m. (ET) to reflect the latest number of tips received as part of the investigation. 

*Updated on 3/2/20 at 10:15 a.m. (ET) to reflect the latest number of tips and additional frequently asked questions.  

*Updated on 3/1/20 at 8:20 p.m. (ET) to reflect the latest number of tips received as part of the investigation.

*Updated on 2/28/20 at 4:25 p.m. (ET) to reflect the latest number of tips received as part of the investigation. 

*Updated on 2/25/20 at 9:30 p.m. (ET) to include information about the arrest of Megan Boswell.

*Updated on 2/25/20 at 4:10 p.m. (ET) to reflect the latest number of tips received as part of the investigation. 

*Updated on 2/24/20 at 2:55 p.m. (ET) to include a list of frequently ask questions associated with the search.

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation continues to work alongside the Sullivan County Sheriff’s Office and the Federal Bureau of Investigation to locate and recover 15-month-old Evelyn Mae Boswell, who became the subject of a statewide AMBER Alert issued by the TBI on Wednesday, February 19th.

TBI.com (March, 2020) AMBER Alert: Evelyn Mae Boswell

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Tennessee man ordered removed to Germany based on service as a concentration camp guard during WWII

A U.S. Immigration Judge in Memphis, Tennessee has issued a removal order against a German citizen and Tennessee resident, based on his service in Nazi Germany in 1945 as an armed guard of concentration camp prisoners in the Neuengamme Concentration Camp system (Neuengamme).


A U.S. Immigration Judge in Memphis, Tennessee has issued a removal order against a German citizen and Tennessee resident, based on his service in Nazi Germany in 1945 as an armed guard of concentration camp prisoners in the Neuengamme Concentration Camp system (Neuengamme).

After a two-day trial, U.S. Immigration Judge Rebecca L. Holt issued her opinion finding Friedrich Karl Berger removable under the Immigration and Nationality Act because his “willing service as an armed guard of prisoners at a concentration camp where persecution took place” constituted assistance in Nazi-sponsored persecution. The court found that Berger served at a Neuengamme sub-camp near Meppen, Germany, and that the prisoners there included “Jews, Poles, Russians, Danes, Dutch, Latvians, French, Italians, and political opponents” of the Nazis.

Judge Holt found that Meppen prisoners were held during the winter of 1945 in “atrocious” conditions and were exploited for outdoor forced labor, working “to the point of exhaustion and death.” The court further found, and Berger admitted, that he guarded prisoners to prevent them from escaping during their dawn-to-dusk workday, and on their way to and from the worksites.

At the end of March 1945, with the advance of British and Canadian forces, the Nazis abandoned Meppen. The court found that Berger helped guard the prisoners during their forcible evacuation to the Neuengamme main camp – a nearly two-week trip under inhumane conditions which claimed the lives of some 70 prisoners.

Mr. Berger, of Oak Ridge, Tenn., could not immediately be reached for comment. He told The Washington Post on Thursday that he was ordered to work in the camp, was there for a short time and did not carry a weapon. In the United States, he said, he had made a living building wire-stripping machines.

“After 75 years, this is ridiculous. I cannot believe it,” he told The Post, adding, “You’re forcing me out of my home.”

“This case is but one example of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) commitment to ensuring that the United States will not serve as a safe haven for human rights violators and war criminals,” said David C. Shaw, Assistant Director, National Security Investigations Division, Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), who oversees the Human Rights Violators and War Crimes Center. “We will continue to pursue these types of cases so that justice may be served.”

“Berger was part of the SS machinery of oppression that kept concentration camp prisoners in atrocious conditions of confinement,” said Assistant Attorney General Brian A. Benczkowski of the Department of Justice’s Criminal Division. “This ruling shows the Department’s continued commitment to obtaining a measure of justice, however late, for the victims of wartime Nazi persecution.”

The investigation was initiated by DOJ’s Human Rights and Special Prosecution Section (HRSP) and was conducted in partnership with ICE’s Homeland Security Investigations Human Rights Violators and War Crimes Center and HSI’s Nashville Special Agent in Charge office.

“The investigation of human rights violations and those who engage in these heinous acts, continues to be a focus for Homeland Security Investigations and this successful outcome is an example of those efforts” stated Jerry C. Templet Jr, Special Agent in Charge, HSI Nashville.

The removal case was jointly tried by attorneys in ICE New Orleans Office of the Principal Legal Advisor (Memphis), and attorneys from DOJ’s HRSP, with the assistance of the Human Rights Violators and War Crimes Center.

Established in 2009, ICE’s Human Rights Violators and War Crimes Center furthers ICE’s efforts to identify, locate and prosecute human rights abusers in the United States, including those who are known or suspected to have participated in persecution, war crimes, genocide, torture, extrajudicial killings, female genital mutilation and the use or recruitment of child soldiers. The HRVWCC leverages the expertise of a select group of agents, lawyers, intelligence and research specialists, historians and analysts who direct the agency’s broader enforcement efforts against these offenders.

Since 2003, ICE has arrested more than 450 individuals for human rights-related violations of the law under various criminal and/or immigration statutes. During that same period, ICE obtained deportation orders against and physically removed 1034 known or suspected human rights violators from the United States. Additionally, ICE has facilitated the departure of an additional 160 such individuals from the United States.

Currently, HSI has more than 180 active investigations into suspected human rights violators and is pursuing more than 1,640 leads and removal cases involving suspected human rights violators from 95 different countries. Since 2003, The HRVWCC has issued more than 76,000 lookouts for individuals from more than 110 countries and stopped over 315 human rights violators and war crimes suspects from entering the U.S.

Currently, HSI has more than 180 active investigations into suspected human rights violators and is pursuing more than 1,640 leads and removal cases involving suspected human rights violators from 95 different countries. Since 2003, The HRVWCC has issued more than 76,000 lookouts for individuals from more than 110 countries and stopped over 315 human rights violators and war crimes suspects from entering the U.S.

Members of the public who have information about foreign nationals suspected of engaging in human rights abuses or war crimes are urged to call the ICE tip line at: 1-866-DHS-2423 (1-866-347-2423).

Callers may remain anonymous.

ICE.gov (March, 2020) Tennessee man ordered removed to Germany based on service as a concentration camp guard during WWII

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UPDATE: AMBER Alert: Evelyn Mae Boswell

The Sullivan County Sheriff’s Office charged Boswell with one count of False Reporting. She is being held in the Sullivan County Jail on a $25,000 bond.


The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation continues to work alongside the Sullivan County Sheriff’s Office and the Federal Bureau of Investigation to locate and recover 15-month-old Evelyn Mae Boswell, who became the subject of a statewide AMBER Alert issued by the TBI on Wednesday, February 19th.

UPDATE: The Bristol Herald Courier reported that Megan Boswell, who has said the toddler’s grandmother took the little girl to Mendota, Virginia, was charged with one count of filing a false police report, according to the Sullivan County Sheriff’s Office. She is being held on $25,000 bond.

On Friday, February 20th, ongoing investigative efforts led authorities to ask for assistance in locating a gray BMW. Two individuals believed to have information regarding Evelyn’s whereabouts were traveling in the car. On Friday afternoon, the vehicle and the individuals were located in Wilkes County, North Carolina. Agents and detectives questioned the couple as part of the ongoing investigation. They are currently being held on charges unrelated to the disappearance of Evelyn Boswell.

Since issuing the AMBER Alert just before 8:00 EST Wednesday, authorities have received more than 500 leads. None, however, has produced any credible sightings regarding the whereabouts of Evelyn Boswell.

Cell Phones and Accessories

During the investigation, authorities have received a number of conflicting statements. That, combined with the fact that Evelyn was not immediately reported missing, makes this a complicated case.

TBI.com (February, 2020) UPDATE: AMBER Alert: Evelyn Mae Boswell

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Investigation into Davidson County Drug Trafficking Operation Results in Multiple Arrests

A joint undercover drug investigation by Special Agents with the Drug investigation Division of the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation and several other agencies has resulted in the arrest of six individuals, and the seizure of cocaine, methamphetamine, marijuana, and multiple handguns.


A joint undercover drug investigation by Special Agents with the Drug investigation Division of the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation and several other agencies has resulted in the arrest of six individuals, and the seizure of cocaine, methamphetamine, marijuana, and multiple handguns.

As a result of this still-ongoing investigation, six individuals were arrested and charged with multiple drug-related offenses, and booked at the Davidson County Jail.

Those arrested are:

Denia Navarro (DOB 09/10/1995) – One count Possession with Intent (Cocaine), one count Drug Paraphernalia.

Odin Navarro (DOB 05/27/1980) – One count Possession with Intent (Cocaine), one count Drug Paraphernalia.

Carlos Torres (DOB 01/16/1980) – One count Possession with Intent (Methamphetamine), one count Possession with Intent (Cocaine), one count Possession in Intent (Marijuana), one count Possession of a Weapon during Dangerous Felony, one count Tampering with Evidence, one count Possession Drug Paraphernalia.

Antonio Mungfuia (DOB 10/06/1980) – One count Possession with Intent (Methamphetamine), one count Possession with Intent (Cocaine), one count Possession in Intent (Marijuana), one count Possession of a Weapon during Dangerous Felony, one count Tampering with Evidence, one count Possession Drug Paraphernalia.

Franklin Cardona (DOB 02/05/1995) – One count Possession with Intent (Methamphetamine), one count Possession with Intent (Cocaine), one count Possession in Intent (Marijuana), one count Possession of a Weapon during Dangerous Felony, one count Tampering with Evidence, one count Possession Drug Paraphernalia.

Deybi Alcantara (DOB 12/26/1995) – One count Possession with Intent (Methamphetamine), one count Possession with Intent (Cocaine), one count Possession in Intent (Marijuana), one count Possession of a Weapon during Dangerous Felony, one count Tampering with Evidence, one count Possession Drug Paraphernalia.

Soffe Men’s 3 Pack-USA Poly Cotton Military Tee

The arrests resulted in which TBI Agents developed information in January 2020 about a drug trafficking organization that was operating in and around Davidson County.

During the course of that investigation, TBI Agents, along with Agents and detectives with the Tennessee Highway Patrol, U.S. Department of Homeland Security, and the Metropolitan Nashville Police Department, executed search warrants on Thursday at five locations within Davidson County.

TBI.com (February, 2020) Investigation into Davidson County Drug Trafficking Operation Results in Multiple Arrests

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