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Trial of Whitmer kidnapping plotters on hold due to COVID-19

The judge in the trial of four men accused of plotting to kidnap Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has halted the proceedings after a key participant tested positive for COVID-19.

According to the Detroit News, an order was filed in federal court on Sunday afternoon in which Chief U.S. District Judge Robert Jonker postponed the trial in federal court in Grand Rapids until at least Thursday.

The judge’s order does not identify who tested positive for COVID-19 and instead refers to an “essential trial participant.”

Jurors have only heard two days of testimony in a trial that is projected to last as long as six weeks and which began 17 months after FBI agents said they thwarted a kidnapping conspiracy involving self-described patriots and militia members angered by restrictions imposed during the first months of the COVID-19 pandemic.

One of the prosecution’s key witnesses is Ty Garbin of Hartland Township, who already entered a guilty plea in the case.

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