Missouri man charged in Amtrak incident in Nebraska asks to switch his plea to guilty

Missouri man charged in Amtrak incident in Nebraska asks to switch his plea to guilty
Taylor Wilson

LINCOLN — A Missouri man has asked to change his plea to guilty in connection with an armed attempt to disable an Amtrak train last fall.

Taylor Wilson, who was linked to a white nationalist group, was scheduled to stand trial June 11 in U.S. District Court on two charges of terrorism against a mass transportation system. The charges carry penalties of up to life in prison.

On Oct. 22, while riding an eastbound Amtrak train near Oxford, Nebraska, Wilson breached a secure area of the train and triggered an emergency stop, according to a federal complaint. Amtrak personnel apprehended Wilson, who was later found to be carrying a loaded .38-caliber pistol and loaded clip of ammunition.

He was also carrying a duffel bag with more ammunition and a business card of the National Socialist Movement, a neo-Nazi group based in Detroit.

Wilson, according to court documents, had traveled to the white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, in August 2017 that ended with a counterprotester being killed and several others being injured after they were rammed by a car.

Wilson entered not guilty pleas to the two felony terrorism charges in February. At the time, his attorney, Jerry Sena of Omaha, said his client may not have been mentally aware of what he was doing when he stopped the train.

On Wednesday, Sena said he could not comment on a proposed plea agreement because it was still under negotiation. He has said he does not believe that Wilson was a member of any white nationalist group.

A plea deal, according to Sena, would also include the resolution of three federal felony gun charges pending against Wilson in connection with a later search of his apartment in St. Charles, Missouri.

Among the items found was a submachine gun and a hidden compartment holding hundreds of rounds of ammunition, a tactical vest and a hand-made shield.

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