Standoff with police ended with suspect being shot
The 42-year-old, of Columbus, Ohio, fled the scene of the attempted attack on Thursday morning before a standoff and shootout took place hours later. The FBI confirmed his death at 3.45pm following an exchange of gunfire.
Officials are investigating Shiffer’s ties to the US Capitol riot and right wing extremism as he appears to have claimed that he was present in Washington on 6 January on Truth Social, a pro-Trump social media site.
Federal agents were already looking into Shiffer’s ties to the Capitol attack before the FBI standoff, the New York Times reports.
Shiffer also appeared to support former US president Donald Trump’s unfounded claims of a stolen election in 2020 and responded to social media posts by pro-Trump figures such as congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene and Donald Trump Jr.
On Tuesday, the FBI carried out a search at Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago club in Florida as part of an investigation into the mishandling of White House documents, sparking anger among his supporters. The raid was referenced in Shiffer’s social media posts this week.
What was FBI searching for in Trump raid that angered Ricky Shiffer?
Ohio gunman Ricky Shiffer appears to have been inspired to violence after the FBI searched Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago residence for evidence in an investigation into his White House’s handling of government documents.
Here’s Andrew Feinberg’s report on what the FBI unconvered in the search.
ICYMI: What we know about Ricky Shiffer
Law enforcement officers shot and killed an Ohio man named Ricky Shiffer on Thursday afternoon, after the 42-year-old allegedly attacked an FBI field office in Cincinnati armed with a nail gun and an assault rifle.
Shiffer, who lived in the city of Columbus, Ohio, according to public records obtained by the Daily Beast, reportedly left a string of violent comments on social media in recent months ahead of the attack.
Here’s everything we know about Ricky Shiffer.
Gunman appears to have left trail of violent messages online
The GOP attack on the FBI shows no signs of stopping
Republicans in Congress who are relying on Donald Trump to excite voters in the fall elections are not only defending the former president against the FBI search of his Mar-a-Lago home but politically capitalizing on it with grave and potentially dangerous rhetoric against the nation’s justice system.
The party that once stood staunchly for law-and-order has dramatically reversed course, stirring up opposition to the FBI and tapping into political grievances and far-right conspiracies that fed the deadly Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol.
It’s all part of the GOP’s election year strategy to harness voter outrage over the unprecedented search, quickly and unequivocally set in motion as Trump hosted a dozen Republicans for dinner of steak and scallops at his private Bedminster club the day after the FBI action.
More from the AP.
Republicans in Congress are not only defending Donald Trump against the FBI search of his Mar-a-Lago home
Police are investigating Ohio FBI attack’s links to ‘violent extremist’ groups
A law enforcement official told ABC News on Friday that Shiffer was being investigated as a “suspected domestic violent extremist” and that his social media history was under investigation following the attack on an FBI office on Thursday.
Investigators are also looking at whether or not Shiffer had ties to far-right extremist groups such as the Proud Boys, whose members have been charged with taking part in January 6, as per the Associated Press.
Shiffer appeared to call for the killing of FBI agents “on sight” in posts on Truth Social, the social media platform set-up by Donald Trump, in the days before the attack, NBC News reported on Thursday.
Catch up on Gino Spocchia’s reporting.
The suspect’s social media posts are being looked at by law enforcement
ICMYI: Ricky Shiffer was a veteran
The 42-year-old served in the Navy on a nuclear submarine and later in the National Guard, Military.com reports.
The Ohio man enlisted in the Navy soon after high school, The Washington Post reports.
Shiffer grew up on a small family farm in Perry County, Pennsylvania, near the Susquehanna River, the oldest of four siblings. More details can be found in our full report.
Gunman shot by police during standoff on Friday
FBI agent warns that rhetoric from GOP attacking agency could lead to more attacks
Attacks from Donald Trump and leading Republican politicians are creating a dangerous climate of anti-law enforcement sentiment in the US, according to a former FBI agent.
“All of this rhetoric is being thrown around without any consideration for possible consequences,” Frank Montoya Jr, a retired FBI special agent who led the bureau’s field offices in Seattle and Honolulu, told The Associated Press on Friday.
“All that does is stir up that minority within the base that aren’t satisfied with just words, they actually want to act it out.”
As Bevan Hurley has reported, ex-FBI officials are worried the Ohio attack could act as a rallying cry for others bent on violence against the agency.
Republicans and rightwing commentators accused of stoking violence and endangering lives as armed man attacks FBI office in Ohio
Fury at FBI continues building on Truth Social
Anger at the FBI continues to build on Truth Social, the social media platform founded by Donald Trump.
As of Friday afternoon, the top hashtags on the site were #EndTheFBI, #DefundTheFBI and #FBIcorruption, NBC News reports.
Ricky Shiffer was among the angry Truth Social users attacking the FBI, after the agency searched the former president’s home in Mar-a-Lago.
A post on Truth Social from an account appearing to belong to Shiffer seemed to confess to the attack.
“If you don’t hear from me, it is true I tried attacking the FBI, and it’ll mean either I was taken off the internet, the FBI got me, or they sent the regular cops,” the update reads.
According to an analysis from The Washington Post, Shiffer appeared to be one of Truth Social’s most prolific posters, sending out 374 messages in the week before the FBI shooting, most of them pro-Trump conspiracy theories.
Ohio gunman had ‘lead foot’ and minor arrests on record
More details have begun to trickle in about Ricky Shiffer, the Ohio man who tried to shoot up an FBI office in Cincinnati on Thursday before being killed by police after a daylong police standoff.
The FBI attack wasn’t Shiffer’s first encounter with law enforcement.
In 2004, he got a speeding ticket in Minnesota, after driving 50 mph in a 30 mph zone in his red Ford Mustage, NBC News reports.
“I have a lead foot,” he reportedly told officers.
That’s certainly true. Records show he got speeding tickets in Ohio, Hawaii, and Florida.
A year before the Minnesota incident, however, Shiffer had his most serious brush with police.
In July of 2003, he was arrested in Moorhead, Minnesota, and pleaded guilty to “obstructing legal process.”
Old acquaintances say Ricky Shiffer had an ‘anger issue’ and ‘got picked up by the wrong crowd’
Now that officials have identified Ricky Shiffer of Ohio as the man who attacked a Cincinnati FBI office on Thursday, those who knew the gunman, who was killed by police, are starting to share their recollections.
Ian McConnell was Shiffer’s neighbour in the Greystone Apartments complex in Columbus, Ohio, where Shiffer lived between 2017 and 2020.
Shiffer was slightly odd but didn’t raise any alarm bells, Mr McConnell told the Cincinnati Enquirer.
“We knew he was a bit off,” McConnell said. “He had a little bit of an anger issue about his car, but who doesn’t?”
The former neighbour said he was shocked to learn what happened to Shiffer, who moved away from Columbus with stated aspirations to live out West.
“It was a shock to us he wound up in Cincinnati,” Mr McConnell said. “I’m afraid this is coming two years too late and Ricky got picked up by the wrong crowd.”
Family members remember Ricky Shiffer as “very intelligent but quiet person.
Family members are speaking out about Ricky Shiffer, the Ohio man shot by law enforcement after attacking an FBI post on Thursday.
Shiffer grew up on a small family farm in Perry County, Pennsylvania, near the Susquehanna River, the oldest of four siblings, The Washington Post reports.
An unnamed family member told the Post that Shiffer was a “very intelligent but quiet person.”
“He had quite a memory on him,” they said. “It was full of facts and information when he would talk about something. He knew a lot about farm equipment.”
“He was quiet, maybe a little awkward, but you could tell he was a very smart kid. He had some brainpower,” the family member added.