MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (WKRN) – He concocted a plan to build a death ray machine, calling it Hiroshima on a light switch. His target was apparently Muslims and President Barack Obama, according to federal officials.
This week, the New York man and reputed Klansman was sentenced to 30 years in prison.
And one of the key witnesses in the trial of Glendon Crawford is from Murfreesboro.
Owner and publisher of The Reader, Pete Doughtie saw a news flash that Crawford had been sentenced.
“There’s another guy that had the potential danger to other people that has been taken off the streets,” Doughtie said.
The newsman was one of the key witnesses for the federal government in Crawford’s trial in August of last year.
“It was sort of interesting, and I’m surprised that how little a part that I played in this whole thing was part of convicting this guy,” Doughtie said.
His testimony for the trial, which was held in Albany, New York, was short yet impactful.
“I just told my story of how he contacted me, drove down from New York, and he and I met on a Sunday afternoon,” Doughtie explained.
Crawford met with Doughtie at the Hardee’s on Memorial Boulevard in Murfreesboro about his death ray machine, which he pitched as capable of killing from a distance.
Doughtie believes he was contacted because of his extensive coverage of the way Rutherford County officials approved construction of the controversial Murfreesboro mosque.
Doughtie said after the meeting was over, Crawford asked if he knew anyone who could back him financially so he could continue constructing the deadly radiation-spewing machine.
Doughtie said Crawford then tried contacting him two more times by phone.
“It got serious when he tried to contact me on several other occasions, and that was about the time the FBI stepped in,” he said.
Not too long after that, undercover video shows Crawford working on the machine in a garage until the FBI rushed in.
“FBI! Get on the ground!” agents can be heard saying on the video.
Doughtie said he’s happy to do this part in helping to bring down Crawford, who the FBI calls a domestic terrorist.
“It was just a small part that God used me to help put this guy away,” he said.
Crawford is also accused of soliciting the help of Eric Feight, a New York computer software expert, in the plot to design the radiation weapon.
Feight pleaded guilty to domestic terrorism in 2014 and received eight years in prison.