Federal officials have issued a warning that the shooting death of a radical Sunni Islamic leader in Michigan on Wednesday night may engender retaliatory violence against law enforcement officers there as well as in the Washington area, though law enforcement officials played it down as a routine measure.
Gunfire erupted during the arrest of Ummah leader Luqman Abdullah and members of his group after Abdullah pulled a gun and shot and killed an FBI canine, according to a document obtained by The Washington Times from the Washington Regional Threat and Analysis Center (WRTAC).
FBI agents returned fire at the warehouse in Dearborn, Mich., and killed Abdullah, who was charged with selling stolen goods and illegal possession and sale of firearms.
“Abdullah’s death and associated arrests may foster resentment, violent rhetoric, and threats from Ummah adherents,” said the raw intelligence document issued by the WRTAC.
“Because of the group’s anti-law enforcement sentiments, law enforcement officers should be particularly mindful of this change in the threat environment and the possibility for retaliation,” the WRTAC said.
As for implications in the D.C. area, the WRTAC said that “Ummah sympathizers or other similar groups may be operating in the National Capital Region. Officers should be alert for possible retaliatory actions as a result of the FBI Detroit raid.”
Supervisory Special Agent Katherine W. Schweit of the FBI’s Washington office declined to comment or even confirm the contents of the document.
But, speaking in general terms, she said, “Any time an incident occurs elsewhere in the country, information is provided to all state, federal and local offices to provide them with the status, and urging them to be cautious regarding similar incidents.”
Assistant Chief Patrick Burke of the Metropolitan Police Department in Washington said he has no information to indicate Ummah is operating within the region.
He also described the warning as general and routine but expressed concern that a document meant solely for law enforcement was released to the media.
The FBI arrested seven people during the raid, but three associates of Abdullah remain at large.
“The Ummah is a radical, violent Sunni Islamic fundamentalist group comprised primarily of African-American Muslim converts who espouse anti-law enforcement and anti-US government sentiments,” the WRTAC said.
Its leader, Abdullah, operated out of the Masjid Al-Haqq in Detroit.
According to an FBI alert, “the death of Abdullah and the arrest of Ummah members/supporters will disrupt the Ummah in Detroit, Michigan. Due to his close ties and staunch support of Jamil Al-Amin (aka H. Rapp Brown), incarcerated leader of the Ummah, Abdullah’s death and the arrests may foster resentment, violent rhetoric, and threats from Ummah adherents.”
• Ben Conery contributed to this report.