FAIRCHILD AIR FORCE BASE, Wash. — Four more personnel based at Fairchild Air Force Base in Spokane County have been indicted as part of an investigation into stolen ammunition.
Court documents name Shawn Robson, Nathaniel A. Richards, Jonah Pierce, and Austin Limacher as plaintiffs. The four were either assigned to the Combat Arms Training Managements section of the 92nd Security Forces Squadron or the Armory at Fairchild.
They join two Sergeants, John I. Sanger and Eric A. Eagleton, who were previously arrested on charges of conspiracy to commit theft of government property, according to The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Washington.
According to the new indictment, filed on May 3, all six “conspired” to steal military ammunition from Fairchild. The court documents leave open the possibility that more people could still be charged.
“It was a part of the conspiracy that the Defendants, and their known and unknown conspirators, would steal military ammunition, property of the United States to which the Defendants had access by means of their military service, and provide the stolen ammunition to the known and unknown conspirators for their personal use and possession,” court documents say.
The indictment also accused the airmen of falsifying documentation to make it look like the stolen ammunition had been used for official military use.
The indictment indicates “approximately 14,000 rounds of assorted ammunition” was stolen.
According to court documents, the case began with an investigation into Sanger in August of 2021. That investigation was related to two social media accounts where the user "was discussing committing acts of violence to further his political agenda."
The court documents say that when Sanger was asked on social media on Dec. 2, 2020 "what 'taking our government back' looked like, Sanger responded, 'I think the capital (sic) needs to be seized... No trial or chance to escape.'" On Dec. 6, court documents state Sanger posted, "They defrauded our election system and are still getting away with it. That means this system has run it's (sic) course. People have to die."
As part of the investigation, an active-duty USAF undercover agent was introduced to Sanger.
In early March of 2022, court documents state that Sanger invited the undercover agent to a meetup at Fishtrap Lake shooting range. Sanger allegedly told the agent that several members of the 92nd Security Forces Squadron Combat Arms Training Management (CATM) section "regularly steal USAF ammunition."
On March 12, the agent and Sanger met up with Eagleton. Court documents say Eagleton told the agent he worked at Fairchild in the CATM section.
"Eagleton detailed stealing up to 3,000 rounds in a day and dividing the stolen ammunition between all members of the CATM section. Eagleton stated all members of the CATM section are aware of the ongoing thefts and allow it to occur," according to court documents.
After meeting up with some other people, the undercover agent said they observed three full ammunition cans.
Later in the month, the undercover agent (U/C) and Sanger exchanged text messages that court documents state detailed Sanger's plan to meet Eagleton to receive stolen ammunition from Fairchild AFB. Court documents share a portion of the text messages:
- Sanger: "Eagle (Eagleton) can hook us up with some rounds. Dude's awesome."
- U/C: "Really? How much does he want for them?"
- Sanger: "Nothing. It's stolen."
- U/C: "Seriously? Bro that's awesome. Think we can get them before Saturday's range day?"
- Sanger: "Yeah he's solid man. I'm gonna (sic) get the ammo tomorrow."
Court documents state that on March 29 agents observed Eagleton and Sanger meet in the parking lot of Northern Quest Resort and Casino. Eagleton was seen getting a military-style green ammunition can from the back of his truck and handing the can to Sanger. The meetup was also captured by casino cameras.
Later that day, Sanger texted the undercover agent. Court documents share part of the text exchange:
- Sanger: "But I got the ammo."
- U/C: "nice"
- Sanger: "5.56"
- U/C: "Green"
- Sanger: "No. No mags this time. 394."
Court documents state that Sanger also texted a photo of ammunition that resembled 5.56mm rounds.
The case is being investigated by the FBI’s Seattle Field Office, Inland Northwest Joint Terrorism Task Force (“INJTTF”), and the United States Air Force Office of Special Investigations (OSI).