California man on deadly mission to White House is arrested, officials say

The man, Kuachua Brillion Xiong, 25, has been
held since Dec 23 at the Pottawattamie County Jail in Council Bluffs, Iowa, on
charges of making threats against a former president, according to sheriff’s

Xiong began driving from his home near
Sacramento on or around Dec 18 “with the intention of driving straight to the White
House in Washington, DC, to kill persons in power,” Justin Larson, a Secret
Service agent, wrote in a criminal complaint.

Xiong made it as far as Iowa. On Dec 21, he
was pulled over by a sergeant with the Cass County Sheriff’s Department “for
driving aggressively, weaving in and out of traffic, and speeding,” according
to the complaint. Officers who detained him noted that he was using Google Maps
to map a route to 1600 Pennsylvania NW, Washington, DC

When the sergeant, Tyler Shiels, searched the
car, he found an AR-15-style rifle, ammunition, loaded magazines, body armor
and medical kits, according to the complaint.

Xiong told investigators that if he had not
been pulled over, he would have continued traveling as part of his plan, which
he said was a mission from God to “combat evil demons in the White House.”
Xiong told investigators that he “believes that he is the only person remaining
who can free the United States of evil.”

According to the criminal complaint, which was
filed in US District Court for the Southern District of Iowa, Xiong assembled
his hit list using the popular app TikTok, downloading videos “to compile a
list of evil individuals he intended to kill.”

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The list included more than 100 videos and
targeted — in addition to Biden and Obama — former President Bill Clinton; Dr
Anthony Fauci, the country’s foremost infectious-disease specialist; and Mark
Zuckerberg, chief executive of Meta, the social media giant previously known as
Facebook. Xiong said he would kill Biden only if he did not comply with Xiong’s
demands, which were not specified in the complaint.

During the interview with officials, Xiong was
adamant that if released from custody he would not return home to California to
see his family and would “do whatever it takes” to complete his plan. “He plans
on dying while fighting evil demons at the White House,” Larson wrote.

In an email Thursday, Mike Maloney, a lawyer
for Xiong, declined to comment on the case.

According to court records, Maloney has
signaled his intent to use an insanity defence in his client’s trial.

©2022 The New York Times Company

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