With the stock market reaching record highs, it’s natural that those who normally wouldn’t concern themselves with Wall Street are looking to cash in. The draw of easy money is what typically lures people into purchasing stock, but the wrong choice could easily land them into the poor house.
Mark Charles Barnett of Ocala, Florida had been teaching himself about markets, hoping that the more education he could obtain, the less likely he would be to lose money. He opened a few trade accounts and then began watching the market like a hawk. Before long, his newfound interest in trading seemed to have spiraled into an obsession.
It was through this self-taught knowledge of financial markets that Barnett began crafting an awful scheme. With the help of an accomplice, he would boobie trap groceries at multiple Target chains. Barnett theorized that if he and his sidekick hit enough chains that the bombings would drive down the stock price, allowing Barnett to swoop in and purchase shares for pennies on the dollar.
Barnett carefully crafted 10 explosive devices disguised as food boxes. He then passed these devices off to his accomplice, as well as gloves, a mask, and a fake license plate to ensure he made a safe getaway. After sending his accomplice off with these items, as well as $10,000 for his services, all Barnett had to do from there on out was to sit back and watch the news.
Unfortunately for Barnett, things did not go exactly as planned. Rather than planting the bombs, Barnett’s hired accomplice quickly had a change of heart and instead brought all of the items Barnett had given him to local authorities and federal agents were promptly dispatched.
Barnett is currently facing 10 years in prison if convicted, but shockingly, this wasn’t Barnett’s first run-in with the law.
ClickOrlando reports that in April of 1992, Barnett was charged after he and another man carjacked a woman and raped her.
While awaiting trial, Barnett and another associate kidnapped a math professor from a North Carolina laundromat. Barnett drove towards Alabama as his accomplice raped the woman in the back seat of her car. The woman was able to escape after they stopped for food.
Barnett was found guilty but was released in 2013.