Acting United States Attorney Steven Russell announced that Cody A. Cape, 24, of Blair, Nebraska, was sentenced today by United States District Judge Brian C. Buescher to a sentence of 117 months’ incarceration for Threatening to Murder a Federal Law Enforcement Officer and Carrying and Using a Firearm During a Crime of Violence. There is no parole in the federal system. Upon his release, Cape will serve a 3-year term of Supervised Release.
In October 2020, Cape was cited by a United States Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) Officer, for a fishing violation. Cape and his friend were subjects of an ongoing poaching investigation that was being investigated by the Officer. During the course of this investigation, Cape’s phone was seized pursuant to a search warrant.
On December 24, 2020, Cape was picked up by his friend and Cape directed his friend to drive to a specific location, which was the Officer’s personal residence in Blair. Cape then had his friend drive him to an apartment in Omaha where Cape retrieved a .45 caliber handgun and a rifle. Cape directed his friend to drive to the Desoto National Wildlife Refuge to look at the employee housing to see if the Officer was there. Cape’s friend refused. Cape placed his handgun on his lap and directed his friend to take him to Desoto National Wildlife Refuge. His friend was fearful and complied. The Desoto National Wildlife Refuge is located on the Nebraska – Iowa border. The main entrance to Desoto National Wildlife Refuge is in Iowa.
On their return from Desoto National Wildlife Refuge, Cape discussed ways he planned to kill the Officer to include using C4, TNT, or dynamite. Cape discussed wiring explosives to the Officer’s USFWS vehicle or throwing explosives through a window into the Officer’s residence to kill the Officer and his family. His friend later contacted police to report what had happened and Cape’s statements.
Cape was located by Blair Police Department officers on December 25, 2020, and had a .45 caliber handgun in his vehicle. Cape was interviewed by FBI and USFWS officers and admitted to making statements about killing the Officer, although Cape claimed he was not serious. Cape stated he was under a lot of stress due to the Officer’s poaching investigation. When asked if he had made statements to kill the Officer, Cape stated “probably” and then went on to state, “I don’t know where the f### I’d get that s###.” When asked for clarification, Cape stated “C4.”
This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the United States Fish and Wildlife Service, and the Blair Police Department.