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Stateside Podcast: FBI informants and kidnapping plot

A weapon seized from Barry Croft, one of the men on trial for the kidnapping plot.
U.S. Attorney's Office for the Western District of Michigan

The Stateside Podcast is possible because of Michigan Radio. If you know about podcasts, you know that many are powered by advertising revenue. That’s not how we do it. We’re raising money for our work this week. And we need your help so that we can continue to bring you these compelling, informative Michigan stories. Click here to support our work.

So in honor of this fundraising week, we’re bringing you some of our favorite Stateside podcast episodes from the past year. We're starting with one of the most alarming stories to come out of Michigan: the alleged plot to kidnap Governor Gretchen Whitmer.

Federal prosecutors and attorneys for an armed anti-government militia continue to lay groundwork for a trial set to take place next year. The group of mostly-Michigan men, the so-called Wolverine Watchmen, are accused of plotting last year to kidnap Governor Gretchen Whitmer. The defense has indicated it will show jurors that the plot never would have happened, had FBI informants not drawn the militia members in.

Today, two Buzzfeed reporters on their investigation, which shines critical light on how the FBI investigated the plot, and the role confidential informants played in the case.


Jessica Garrison, senior investigative editor for BuzzFeed News, based in San Francisco

Ken Bensinger, investigative reporter for BuzzFeed News, based in Los Angeles

Looking for more conversations from Stateside? Right this way.

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Rachel Ishikawa joined Michigan Public in 2020 as a podcast producer. She produced Kids These Days, a limited-run series that launched in the summer of 2020.