A Pennsylvania man who has posted jihadi songs and pictures of himself in Nazi garb online allegedly bit two FBI agents and reached for a loaded gun when the agents attempted to question him.
Emerson Begolly, 21, was sitting alone in his car in the parking lot of a fast food restaurant in New Bethlehem, north of Pittsburgh, on Tuesday morning when he was approached by the agents. According to a criminal complaint filed Wednesday, Begolly was "a subject of a criminal investigation" and "agents had reason to believe he might be armed."
When the agents opened the doors of Begolly's car, according to the complaint, he allegedly "screamed immediately and reached toward his jacket." The agents thought he was reaching for a firearm and during the ensuing struggle Begolly allegedly bit both of them, drawing blood. A loaded 9 millimeter handgun was found in his jacket, according to the complaint.
Begolly, whose listed address is in Harrison, Pennsylvania, is being charged with assaulting FBI agents and possessing a firearm during a crime of violence. Calls to the federal prosecutor's office and the FBI office in Pittsburgh were not returned.
Begolly has posted jihadist songs and poetry online under the alias Asadullah Alshishani, including an original song on YouTube that pays tribute to Osama Bin Laden. "Amir of the Ansar" includes the lyrics "You fight AmeriKKKa/And terrorize the Jews/You slay the murtadeen/And blow up the Hindus." According to the web site The Jawa Report, Begolly's alter ego also posted a song that lauded the late Hamas founder Sheikh Ahmed Yassin and boasted "When the Jew's blood reds my knife/Then my life is free from strife."
In December, according to The Jawa Report, he posted a tribute to the suicide bomber who attempted to bomb downtown Stockholm on a jihadi web forum.
On his MySpace account, Begolly posted pictures of himself when younger dressed in a Nazi uniform. A more recent picture shows him with a beard and a knit skullcap.
Begolly was registered as an online student of Pennsylvania State University. The campus newspaper reported that Begolly attended a pro-Palestinian rally on campus in early 2009, and represented himself as a Chechen.
University spokeswoman Lisa Powers told ABC News that Begolly has been suspended as of Wednesday. "He will not be allowed on a Penn State campus as long as charges are pending against him," said Powers, who also said she believed that school administrators had learned of law enforcement interest in Begolly just prior to the Christmas break. "University administrators were notified and have cooperated fully with law enforcement." said Powers.
The ABC affiliate in Pittsburgh, WTAE-TV, reported that at a detention hearing in federal court on Thursday afternoon, the FBI claimed that Begolly's father had introduced him to Nazi beliefs and dressed him as a Nazi, and that Begolly's mother had tried to have Begolly admitted for psychiatric care.
The judge ruled that Begolly could go free pending trial, but Begolly will remain in detention for 24 hours while prosecutors appeal the judge's decision.
Calls to Begolly's relatives were not returned.