KISSIMMEE, Fla. - A man accused of fatally shooting two Kissimmee police officers last year might be linked to a group the Federal Bureau of Investigation has designated extremist, a state expert said.
The expert witness for prosecutors said Everett Miller's beliefs are consistent with those of that group.
Miller is charged with first-degree murder in the shooting deaths of Kissimmee police Officer Matthew Baxter and Kissimmee police Sgt. Sam Howard.
The state's expert said the name Miller was using on social media was one indication of his beliefs. She said notes found in his car and books he requested from relatives indicate his link to an extremist group that the FBI was concerned might target law enforcement.
On social media, Miller went by the name Malik Mohammad Ali.
A state expert on political and anti-government extremism said that is one indication Miller was developing Moorish beliefs.
She said "his beliefs are consistent with those of the Moorish movement, a loosely-knit group of related organizations that fall under the black identity extremist (B.I.E.) designation."
She cited a now declassified FBI intelligence assessment from last year titled "Black identity extremists likely motivated to target law enforcement officers" to explain why the FBI believes the extremists seek to use force or violence in response to perceived racism and injustice in American society to establish a separate black homeland in the United States.
The FBI's report indicated concern about an increase in violence from the groups following the 2014 unrest in Ferguson, Missouri, where an officer was not indicted in the shooting death of Michael Brown.
The state expert said the following indicators illustrate Miller's developing beliefs: his use of #makeamerickkamooragain in social media posts, his having requested from relatives a book about black superiority and handwritten notes found in his car referencing Moorish leaders.
Miller's next court hearing is scheduled for November. His trial could begin in early 2019.
© 2019 Cox Media Group.