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Modesto man sentenced for attempting to plot terrorist attack on Pier 39

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The Modesto man who attempted to plot a terrorist attack at Fisherman’s Wharf in San Francisco was sentenced to 15 years in prison on Monday under a plea agreement with federal prosecutors, according to court records.

Everitt Aaron Jameson, a 26-year-old tow truck driver with military experience, pleaded guilty to one count of attempting to provide material support and resources to a designated foreign terrorist organization on June 4.

Court records show Jameson spoke with undercover FBI agents about unleashing a possible terrorist attack on behalf of ISIS at Pier 39 on Christmas Day 2017. He sought to model the attack after the truck driver that ran over eight people in New York in October 2017 or the 2015 mass shooting in San Bernardino.

On Dec 18, 2017, court records show Jameson had second thoughts about the plan and told an undercover FBI agent, “I also don’t think I can do this after all. I’ve reconsidered.”

But he was arrested soon after.

Chief U.S. District Judge Lawrence J. O’Neill sentenced Jameson in Oakland. Under the plea agreement, O’Neill also sentenced him to life under supervised release and to 500 hours in a drug treatment program.

Prosecutors dropped a second charge against Jameson for distribution of information relating to destructive device under the agreement.

Jameson joined the U.S. Marine Corps in June 2009 and qualified as a sharpshooter before being discharged for failing to disclose he had asthma, according to court records.

His arrest prompted Mayor London Breed, then acting mayor, to come out in favor of the San Francisco Police Department rejoining an FBI anti-terror task force. The SFPD stopped participating in the Joint-Terrorism Task Force over concerns about violations of civil liberties and racial profiling last year.

“I do think that there is a need for the relationship to exist for the purposes of dealing with situations like what we had to with the threat on Pier 39,” Breed told the San Francisco Examiner in an editorial board meeting before the June election.

In January, SFPD Chief Bill Scott said the FBI still notified him personally about the possible plot despite the department not participating in the task force.

On Monday, the San Francisco Police Officers Association responded to news of the sentencing by calling for the SFPD to rejoin the task force.

“The SFPD never participated in this investigation even though this attack was going to happen in our city,” the SFPOA said on Twitter. “Why? Because the BOS pulled out of the JTTF and never rejoined.”

mbarba@sfexaminer.com

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