Connecticut man admits trying to fight for ISIS

Kevin McCormick was prevented from travelling to Syria in 2019

US District Court in Bridgeport, Connecticut. Photo: US General Services Administration
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A Connecticut man pleaded guilty to attempting to provide material support to ISIS, more than three years after he was arrested at an airport while trying to travel to Syria to aid the group, officials said.

Kevin McCormick, of Hamden, pleaded guilty in US District Court of Bridgeport on Thursday, a US Attorney's office said.

A conviction of providing material support to a designated foreign terrorist organisation carries a maximum prison term of 20 years. McCormick was scheduled to be sentenced on April 6.

Federal authorities said McCormick expressed a desire to travel to Syria and fight for ISIS, dating back to 2019.

When asked by a witness where he would like to travel, McCormick said: “I don’t know, I don’t know bro — it’s gotta be like Syria,” according to federal prosecutors.

“Whichever place is easiest, whatever place I can get there the fastest, the quickest, the easiest, and where I can have a rifle and I can have some people bro,” he said.

“That’s what I need, I need a rifle and I need some people, I need Islamic law, I need, that’s what I need, because if I have these things, it’s going to be very hard to kill me.”

Militant Islamist fighters take part in a military parade along the streets of northern Raqqa province. Reuters

He had also pledged his alliance to Abu Bakar Al Baghdadi, a leader of ISIS who took his own life in October 2019.

Authorities said McCormick was denied trying to purchase a firearm and knife in Washington state in 2019 because a clerk thought he was acting strange.

On October 12, 2019, the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) had prevented him from attempting to board a flight from Connecticut to Jamaica, where he then would have travelled to Syria.

McCormick was arrested at a small private airport a week later where he had planned to fly to Canada before travelling to Jordan, prosecutors said.

He was initially ruled incompetent to stand trial during his criminal case, but that was later reversed after he had received treatment at a federal prison.

The Associated Press contributed to this report

Updated: January 13, 2023, 2:47 PM