FLINT, Mich. — A Canadian man convicted of terrorism for almost killing a Michigan police officer whereas yelling “God is nice” in Arabic was sentenced to life in jail on Thursday, after boldly declaring that he solely regretted not having a machine-gun throughout the knife assault.
Amor Ftouhi’s statements shocked U.S. District Decide Matthew Leitman, who mentioned he’d been “wrestling very arduous” with a choice about whether or not to permit the Tunisia native an opportunity to sometime be launched from jail.
Leitman mentioned the remarks “persuaded me past any shadow of a doubt” life time period was acceptable for the 51-year-old Ftouhi, who moved to Montreal in 2007.
“He was crystal clear in the present day: If he had the chance to kill extra individuals, he would,” the decide mentioned.
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Ftouhi drove 1,609 kilometres from Montreal to the airport in Flint, Michigan, the place he repeatedly stabbed Lt. Jeff Neville within the neck in June 2017.
Investigators mentioned Ftouhi wished to take Neville’s gun and begin capturing individuals at Bishop Airport. Ftouhi legally entered the U.S. at Champlain, New York, and arrived in Flint 5 days later. He tried however failed to purchase a gun at a gun present and as a substitute purchased a big knife.
WATCH: FBI calls Michigan airport stabbing ‘act of terrorism’, alleged attacker is Canadian (June 21, 2017)
“Do I remorse what I did? By no means,” Ftouhi instructed the decide inside a federal courtroom in Flint. “I remorse I didn’t get that machine-gun. I remorse I didn’t kill that cop.”
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Ftouhi mentioned he had a superb training and plenty of expertise however felt discrimination in Canada as a result of he wasn’t a white Christian. He pledged allegiance to his Muslim religion and mentioned western counties and Arabic international locations needs to be cursed in the event that they “don’t rule in accordance with Allah.”
He was convicted in November of terrorism and two different crimes.
WATCH: Montreal man accused in Flint airport stabbing says it was ‘his mission’ (Aug. eight, 2017)
Neville survived the assault however has misplaced feeling on the best facet of his face. He retired from the airport police division due to post-traumatic stress dysfunction.
“He picked the unsuitable People to assault that day,” Neville instructed Leitman, referring to fellow officers and witnesses who saved him and pounced on Ftouhi.
“He ought to by no means stroll the streets as a free man once more.”
Ftouhi’s legal professional, Joan Morgan, argued for a 25-year jail sentence in solitary confinement, saying it could successfully be a life time period due to Ftouhi’s age. The decide praised Morgan’s work however repeatedly challenged her over the advice, particularly after Ftouhi’s courtroom remarks.
Morgan mentioned Ftouhi’s psychological well being had deteriorated on the time of the assault and has slipped even additional throughout 22 months in custody awaiting trial and sentencing.
“Folks change. … He’s greater than what his actions have been,” Morgan mentioned.