So the Daily Kos blogging contingent was all set to stay at a certain hotel in Denver. At the last minute --literally, the night before many of us flew out to Denver--we got word that we would be switching hotels. It turned out to be a dump, so yeah, an upgrade was in order.
Our characterization of the place as a "dump" characteristic stemmed from (a) the horrible nature of the place, in terms of cleanliness and such, and (b) the fact that one of our contributing editors was stirred awake by a meth bust across the hall. Waking up to swat teams is a surefire clue that you're not staying at a five star hotel, that's for sure, and if there was ever a sign to change hotels, a meth bust outside your hotel door is sure to be it.
So change we did, and somehow found rooms at a much nicer place, with at least the illusion of cleanliness and not a drug bust in sight.
And today, we learn that the meth bust across the hall was just one part of a much larger and more disturbing story:
DENVER (CBS4) ― CBS4 has now learned at least four people are under arrest in connection with a possible plot to kill Barack Obama at his Thursday night acceptance speech in Denver. All are being held on either drug or weapons charges. [...]
The story began emerging Sunday morning when Aurora police arrested 28-year-old Tharin Gartrell. He was driving a rented pickup truck in an erratic manner according to sources.
Sources told CBS4 police found two high-powered, scoped rifles in the car along with camouflage clothing, walkie-talkies, a bulletproof vest, a spotting scope, licenses in the names of other people and methamphetamine. One of the rifles is listed as stolen from Kansas.
Subsequently authorities went to the Cherry Creek Hotel to contact an associate of Gartrell's. But that man, who was wanted on numerous warrants, jumped out of a sixth floor hotel window. Law enforcement sources say the man broke an ankle in the fall and was captured moments later. Sources say he was wearing a ring with a swastika, and is thought to have ties to white supremacist organizations.
A third man -- an associate of Gartrell and the hotel jumper was also arrested. He told authorities that the two men "planned to kill Barack Obama at his acceptance speech."
That man, along with a woman, are also under arrest.
The Secret Service, FBI, ATF and the joint terrorism task force are all investigating the alleged plot.
Disturbing yes, but it makes for one hell of a convention story nonetheless.
For more, check out GregMitch's diary here.
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