GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — One of the men who was charged in the alleged plot to kidnap Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer, and later acquitted on all counts, talked with FOX 17 Thursday about how he perceives the retrial against Adam Fox and Barry Croft.
Brandon Caserta and Daniel Harris were looking at serious prison time if convicted for charges related to an alleged conspiracy to kidnap Governor Whitmer. A jury found both men innocent on all counts leveled against them.
They were charged in conjunction with Adam Fox, Barry Croft, Ty Garbin and Kaleb Franks at the federal level.
Garbin and Franks ended up taking plea deals with the government prior to the first trial, agreeing to testify on their behalf in court.
Garbin was been sentenced to just more than six years (75 months) in prison for his role in the alleged plot, while Franks has yet to be sentenced.
After their acquittals, both Caserta and Harris have remained low key, not making any appearances in the media.
"I think it's ridiculous that the government's still going to try to continue to push this narrative that these people are actually terrorists, and that actually wanted to do violence," Caserta told FOX 17 Thursday.
"I mean, this is a group of dudes who shoot guns and talk crap. You know what I mean? And that's really what it is."
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When asked if the FBI's investigation tactics left him worried day-to-day, Caserta responded, "not really, you know, I live my life and do my thing without fear."
"I'm sure the FBI is still gonna continue to watch me, probably forever. But so what? That doesn't change my beliefs... There's a bunch of people out there that hate me, but they don't know me... they don't know anything about me. They just hear what the government told them, or the corporate media."
FOX 17 asked him how he feels about the retrial, with the government introducing less evidence this time around.
"I think that there was definitely a dynamic where they're trying to condense the amount of information that gets in, which muddies the water as far as being able to provide context to what's actually going on.
"As time goes on, in this new trial, the body of information just gets smaller and smaller and smaller. So now the jury has a more difficult time of trying to discern what's really going on."
Caserta says he hopes the jury acquits Fox and Croft of their charges, as the jury did for him in the first trial.
"The FBI obviously concocted this entire thing, and without them present, this would never have happened. They use millions of taxpayer dollars to perpetuate this narrative."
After being locked up for a year and a half, Caserta is ready to move on with his life and his freedom.
"Everything was taken from me. My entire life was just taken from from beneath me, and I'm still trying to build that back up," he explained Thursday.
"But, it's happening. Things are moving forward."