Let’s play a little game of You’re The Judge.  Police arrest a man who has told seven Memphis businesses that he would “blow [them] to pieces” if they didn’t close.  When police pulled him over, they discover three cassettes with Islamic instruction on them, and discover that the suspect, Mohamed Ibrahim, has been telling people that he wants to conduct jihad in Memphis.  When they arrest him, he kicks out the window of the police cruiser and has to be subdued with pepper spray.

Ibrahim is charged with commission of an act of terrorism, filing false reports, and disorderly conduct.  Would you release him on $100 bond?

Tonight, Mohamed Ibrahim is out after posting $100 bond. Earlier in the day, he was arrested after police say he walked into several Memphis businesses and threatened to blow them up.

Court records show Ibrahim was also telling people he was Muslim, and wanted to start a jihad, or holy war, in Memphis.

Police say when they arrested him, he had a butcher knife hidden in one of his jacket sleeves.

Why wasn’t he charged with carrying a concealed weapon?  As I recall, any blade over a few inches becomes illegal to conceal.  Unless this is the world’s smallest “butcher knife,” a CCW charge should have been added to the list.  For that matter, where’s the resisting arrest charge?  Damage to public property?

If anything, I’d be inclined to have him held for psychiatric observation to make sure he wasn’t a danger to anyone, including himself.  But even apart from that, seven businesses now have to hire security that they probably can’t afford in case Ibrahim isn’t impressed enough with the American legal system to suspend his jihad.  The police certainly did their part, but they can’t just station themselves at all of these businesses for the foreseeable future.  The alleged extortion may work just out of fear — which is exactly what terrorists intend.

Ibrahim’s actions should have raised a number of red flags to a judge, who had a wide range of options at his or her disposal.  A $100 bond isn’t even a traffic ticket.  (via Buy Danish)

Update: Either the original reporting was incorrect or the bail got increased in Ibrahim’s court appearance this morning.  According to Shelby County courthouse website, the bail is now at $50,000 (case number 09148795).  He has a court date of January 11th.  Thanks to Robert A for the information.

Update II: I’ve left a message with the county DA’s office to clarify whether the two press reports were wrong, or whether the judge changed the bail today at the arraignment.  I’m guessing that it’s the latter, but will update the post when I find out.

Tags: terrorism