Report details teen terrorist suspect's arrest

19-year-old was already in jail on grand theft charges


JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A police report obtained by Channel 4 on Thursday details why a Jacksonville teen accused of terrorism was already in jail when federal investigators came looking for him.

It's been about a year since the investigation into 19-year-old Shelton Bell began.

Jacksonville police arrested Bell on grand theft charges in connection with his involvement with fixing customers' computers at the flea market on Pecan Park Road.

According to the police report, a detective working off duty alerted the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office Intelligence Unit about a vendor potentially ripping off a computer customer.

On July 22, 2012, a woman said she dropped off her $300 computer to be fixed by Bell, according to the report. That apparently happened with several people funding Bell's trip overseas.

The investigator said, "After the suspect cleared out his booth with all of the victims' property, the suspect bought a one-way ticket from the United States to Israel."

The report mentions Bell's absence from the country for two months. Then when he came back, "The suspect has made no efforts to return any of the victims' property," the report reads.

While JSO nabbed Bell on a theft charge at the flea market, police also said they got a dose of Bell's terrorism potential.

On Jan. 19, the reporting officer talked about arresting Bell at his home, then interviewing him downtown. That's when Bell chastised the officer, according to the report.

"You're Muslim and you represent the wrong law with the badge," he said, according to the report.

The officer said Bell talked about the Sharia law, the Islamic secular law.

Also, the officer says Bell told him, "Think about it. Why do you think I went overseas? Just think about it. Have you ever heard of being a soldier?"

The federal indictment says Bell went to great lengths in training others and producing videos on how to prepare for participating in jihadist attacks.

Federal prosecutors also seem convinced Bell took younger people into a local cemetery to destroy religious objects as part of the training.

Bell's next status conference is set for Sept. 23. His trial could begin between Oct. 7 and 18.

If convicted as charged, Bell could get up to 30 years in prison, 15 years on each charge, a $250,000 fine and a $100 assessment fee the day of his sentencing.

He could face up to 10 extra years in prison if he breaks his supervisor lease that he will be assigned to once originally released from prison.

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