I signed off on this plea deal for a number of key reasons.
First, Nicholas Rovinski was a minor player in this beheading plot. He turned states evidence, making the US government’s case against the ringleader, Daoud Wright, rock solid. His testimony was critical to the case.
Secondly, Rovinski reverted back to Catholicism shortly after his arrest. I know that it could all be smoke and mirrors, but it certainly makes him a target for devout Muslims inside prison.
Judge sentences 2nd man in beheading plot to 15 years
AP, December 20, 2017:
BOSTON (AP) — A Rhode Island man has been sentenced to 15 years in federal prison after admitting to participating in a plot to behead a conservative blogger on behalf of the Islamic State group.Nicholas Rovinski, of Warwick, was sentenced on Wednesday by a federal judge in Boston, one day after David Wright, of Everett, Massachusetts, was sentenced to 28 years in prison in connection with the same plot that was never carried out.Rovinski testified against Wright after pleading guilty to conspiracy for his role in the plot to kill Pamela Geller,Both prosecutors and defense attorneys had recommended a 15-year sentence for Rovinski, the minimum allowable under federal law.
Prosecutors called Wright the “mastermind” of the plot.
Here is my Victim Impact Statement in the Nicolas Rovinski sentencing:
Honorable William G. Young
U.S. District Court
District of Massachusetts
Victim Impact Statement
Re: Nicholas Rovinski
Due to the additional, ongoing threats to my life and the concomitant financial burden, I am drained beyond my means and unable to be present for this hearing. I am therefore submitting this statement in writing and hope that it will be heeded.
Nicholas Rovinski has brought immense devastation to my life and that of members of my family. The threat that Rovinski and his fellow plotters brought into my life is a constant, 24-hour one. I will be looking over my shoulder for the rest of my life. Mind you, there is a significant difference between Rovinski and his fellow jihad conspirator, Daoud Wright: Rovinski came into the plot later in time, and played less of a role. Rovinski reportedly has cooperated with authorities. In conversations that were recorded by law enforcement officials, Rovinski says very little.
Nevertheless, I ask the court to be cautious. Rovinski wrote two letters from prison to Wright. He was still calling for beheading and clearly was a convinced and committed jihad terrorist, eager to murder for Allah.
It has been reported that Nicholas Rovinski has left Islam and returned to Catholicism, but his sincerity cannot be taken for granted, as deception is part of the twisted beliefs that led him to join this murder plot. Thus I cannot be sure, and no one can be sure, that once he is released from prison at any time in the future, he would not resume his efforts to kill me and my relatives.
Therefore, despite his plea deal, Nicholas Rovinski should be given the maximum possible sentence. It is a shame that he cannot be given a life sentence, because that is what he gave me.
Nicholas Rovinski has made it impossible for me to live a normal life in numerous ways, and this will never end for me. Will it end for Rovinski himself once he is released in a few years?
There should be no leniency for Nicholas Rovinski. Plotting murder should never be something the courts treat with leniency, especially when the murder is being plotted against someone for exercising a Constitutional right. Rovinski plotted to kill me because I dared to stand up for the freedom of speech. Giving a light sentence to Nicholas Rovinski would send the message to thousands of others that they can plot freely to murder those who say things that offend them, and only be in prison for a few years.
Please don’t let that happen. The toll his plot has exacted on my loved ones and myself is incalculable. Send the message that murder plots are never taken lightly, and the freedom of speech will be protected. Please make Nicholas Rovinski pay the fullest possible price for his crimes.
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