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Man gets 30 years for planning murder plot that got his uncle shot to death in a Roslindale parking lot

WBZ reports a federal judge today sentenced David Daoud Wright of Everett to 30 years in prison for hatching a plot to behead a rightwing writer but which fell apart after he convinced his uncle in Roslindale to go kill some cops - only to be shot dead in the parking lot of the Roslindale CVS in 2015 by an FBI agent and a Boston Police officer who had been monitoring the two and who said he refused orders to stop coming at them with a large knife.

Wright had originally been sentenced to 27 years in federal prison following his 2017 conviction, but an appeals court overturned one of his convictions and sent his case back to a lower-court judge to re-sentence him on his remaining conviction of conspiracy to commit acts of terrorism transcending national boundaries and obstruction of justice.

As they had done before his first sentencing, prosecutors urged Judge Douglas Woodlock to sentence Wright to life in prison because he had pledged himself to ISIS, had conceived of a plan to behead Pamela Geller, had roped his uncle, Usaamah Rahim into the plot and had continued to show fealty to ISIS even after his arrest.

His attorney argued for a sentence of just 14 years, followed by 14 years of probation, arguing ISIS has basically fallen apart, that the Arabic writing he posted on a prison bulletin board was not the dreaded ISIS white-on-black pledge and that he has health issues - specifically morbid obesity and high blood pressure - that would be worsened by continued imprisonment. He also cited fairness: That if right-wingers involved in Charlottesville got only a year in prison for violence, it is unfair for Wright to get a far longer sentence just because the government finds foreign-influenced terrorism worse than homegrown terrorism.

Wright will get credit for the roughly five years he has already spent in federal custody.

In 2018, his uncle's mother sued the FBI, alleging investigators set him up for an execution outside the CVS, near his Roslindale apartment.

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So he wins an appeal reversing one conviction & then gets 3 more years added to his sentence? That doesn't seem fair, does it?

I can't help but wonder how a prison diet is supposed to worsen his morbid obesity.


I don't understand why police aren't taught to shoot people in the legs or in other non-lethal ways. If the guy is attacking with a knife, immobilizing him is sufficient to stop the threat.


A knife can kill you. Give me a knife and another human being (who isn't trained in knife defense or any sort of self defense) and I can probably stop your heart within 60 seconds if I had you within 25 feet.

The issue is if the guy with the knife is just holding it? Is he running at you? Is he walking away?

Shooting firerarms is not easy. If you miss their legs and end up killing them or someone else, what happens then? Shooting at any moving target is very hard as well, especially somewhere like the legs or arms.


I'm the last person to defend police shooting people, but coming from a self-defense perspective, it's absolutely legitimate to shoot someone in a manner that's lethal when they're coming at you with a lethal weapon. It's about stopping them in the most sure way possible, which means it's about hitting the broadest part of their body--the safest way to do so is therefore a shot to the chest.

The rule I remember is if someone's within 23 feet of you with a weapon out, they can reach you before you can draw down on them and fire.


In this case they were in an empty parking lot. According to the story, the guy didn't take out the knife and charge them at full speed. The whole thing played out fairly slowly according to their report.

As for missing a shot a killing someone else, aiming low is going to reduce the chances that anyone is going to get killed.

and miss you could get yourself killed. In theory it sound nice, and I agree that there are a million different ways that this could have gone down. You can even see in the video there wasn't anyone charging. But if you are surrounded by police and decide to pull out a knife for any reason.....I'm guessing that changes everything.


"I felt slightly threatened so I decided to kill the person" shouldn't be considered acceptable.

In 90% of these cases, the response from the police didn't match that of the possible threat. I'm sympathetic to police having a hard job and making split second decisions but the default shouldn't be shoot to kill.

Even on the basis that aiming high reduces the chance of missing the target, there are still countless people who are killed mistakenly when police miss. The hospital valet is a recent example in Boston.


The valet wasn't killed, but your point is still valid.


Let's say there are no police. Just humans with guns to protect themselves and others. The guy down at the Hospital pulls out a gun (would look real to anyone), and another human is going to shoot back (and might miss). The human isn't shooting at Root to knock the gun out of his hand, he is shooting to kill him so that he doesn't kill that person.

"slightly threatened?" Any rational human (the courts legal standard for everyone including cops) is going to consider a gun pointed at you a threat.


But I think the laws should be changed such that defending oneself doesn't include aiming to kill the other person unless there is absolutely no other alternative. Basically, you don't get to shoot to kill until the other person has shot first. Otherwise you shoot to disarm and escape.

This is true for police and non-police alike.


You have to wait until they shoot it first? How about if they are pointing it at someone else? What is the waiting time then?


You don't shoot to kill.

There's a risk someone is going to be killed in both directions but as a citizen, I'd rather take the risk an assailant shoots someone innocent vs the assailant being killed by the police when they could have been appended without being killed.

A lot of people are killed needlessly by police. This UHub story is one of those cases.


The police keep the rule that guns are used only to shoot at center mass and kill people because if a policeman tried to used a gun in a "less lethal" shot and instead killed the person, the victim's family would sue him for sure. Removing the possibility of "less lethal" gun use results in fewer lawsuits (meaning not just physical but legal safety for officers).

The police do use "less lethal" weapons. Every one of them has resulted in people dying. Every time that happens, there's a lawsuit. Pepper ball in the eye, anyone?

I'd like to see a lot of the work that police shouldn't be doing rerouted to more appropriate (and newly funded) agencies. (This is known as "defund the police"). I also think there is a real and persistent racial problem with policing nationwide, and I'm glad there's a movement to deal with it now. I bet if police shot fewer people dead, it would even be better for the police. We should all work to make that happen.

That said, shooting a guy who was attacking policemen with a big knife? No, that's far from unjustified; it's practically suicide. Save the complaints for something actually questionable.


Just because you suck at being a terrorist doesn't mean you get a mulligan.