U.S. military leak suspect Jack Douglas Teixeira remains in custody following hearing
April 27, 2023

Prosecution fears Teixeira poses flight risk, threatens national security while attorneys request release

Jack Douglas Teixeira, a member of the US Air National Guard, appeared in federal court in Worcester, Massachusetts, on Thursday for a detention hearing. He remains in custody following the proceedings.

Teixeira has been accused of breaking the Espionage Act and is facing charges of leaking classified military information and possessing a stockpile of weapons in his bedroom.

The 21-year-old has been accused of disclosing classified documents, which included information about troop movements in the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, to a group of gamers on Discord. Federal prosecutors are anticipated to argue that Teixeira should be detained due to the danger he poses to national security. In a document, they mentioned that Teixeira had erased evidence related to the case and had a record of making violent threats on the internet.

Prosecutors also noted that Teixeira had a gun locker containing handguns, bolt-action rifles, and a military-style rifle with a high-capacity magazine just two feet from his bed. The government also said that FBI agents found a gas mask, ammunition, and what appeared to be a “silencer-style accessory in his desk drawer.”

The prosecution fears that Teixeira “may still have access to a trove of classified information” and that “hostile nation states could offer him safe harbor and attempt to facilitate his escape from the United States.” They believe that he is a flight risk and poses a threat to national security.

Teixeira’s attorneys have opposed pretrial detention and have asked the judge to let him go home to the custody of his father. They offered to have him post a bond of $20,000 and wear a location monitoring device and said he could be prohibited from using the internet without parental supervision.

Prosecutors are expected to dig into Teixeira’s history dating back to his teenage years to make their case. In high school, Teixeira was suspended after making racial threats and remarks about guns. Teixeira attributed those remarks to a reference in a video game. In November 2022, Teixeira allegedly said that if he had his way, he would “kill a ton of people” because it would be “culling the weak-minded,” according to prosecutors.

Teixeira’s lawyers attempted to minimize the significance of the high school occurrence, stating that it was thoroughly examined, and he was permitted to return to school following a psychiatric evaluation. Additionally, they indicated that their client no longer had access to classified information and was not charged with attempting to distribute it widely.

The judge did not rule during Thursday’s hearing but took arguments from prosecutors and Teixeira’s attorneys under advisement. If convicted, Teixeira, who remains in custody as the judge considers his release, faces up to 15 years in prison if convicted.

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