Amalia, NM – Prosecutors said that the father of a missing Georgia boy whose remains are believed to have been located inside a rural New Mexico compound was training future school shooters on the remote property.
Court records that were filed on Wednesday revealed that Siraj Ibn Wahhaj had been conducting weapons training at the off-the-grid compound located near the Colorado border, the Associated Press reported.
Police said the compound first came to their attention after somebody living inside sent a plea for help to a Clayton County detective, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.
“We are starving and need food and water,” the note read.
Authorities entered the compound on Aug. 3 as they searched for the missing three-year-old boy.
They found 11 starving and abused children ranging in age from one to 15, all being held at the property, NBC News reported. The missing boy was not among the children found in the compound.
But police did find the remains of a deceased child on the property, and believe it was the body of Wahhaj’s missing son Abdul-Ghani, who would have turned four years old on Monday.
However, the identity of the remains has not yet been confirmed by authorities, the Associated Press reported.
The 11 children found on the property were removed into the custody of child protective services and put into foster homes.
A foster parent who is taking care of one of the children told Taos County authorities that the child said that Wahhaj “had trained the child in the use of an assault rifle in preparation for future school shootings,” according to NBC News.
Police first became involved when Wahhaj allegedly took his son from Georgia in December of 2017 because he wanted to perform an exorcism on him.
The boy’s mother told police that Wahhaj thought his son was possessed by the devil, NBC News reported.
According to a warrant, Abdul-Ghani suffered from seizures and hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy, a birth defect caused by lack of oxygen and blood flow, and also could not walk.
Wahhaj told the boy’s mother he was taking his son to the park and never brought him back home, according to an extradition warrant that has been filed with the court by Clayton County, Georgia authorities.
The last known sighting of the boy was on Dec. 13, 2017, when Wahhaj was involved in a single-vehicle car accident in Chilton County, Alabama.
There were six children and three adults total in the vehicle when it crashed, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.
Wahhaj told responding officers that the group was headed to New Mexico on a camping trip.
Police arrested a total of five adults at the squalid northern New Mexico compound. None of the adults found at the property revealed Abdul-Ghani’s location to authorities.
Lucas Allen Morton, Jany Leveille, Hujrah Wahhaj, and Subhannah Wahhaj were all believed to be related to Wahhaj, although it wasn’t clear exactly what the relationship was, according to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
The two women who were arrested are believed to be the mothers of the 11 abused children who were rescued from the property.
Neighbors of the remote outpost said that when the occupants first moved in and built their solar-run compound, the children would occasionally play with other children in the area. That stopped over time, however.
Taos County Sheriff Jerry Hogrefe said investigators believed the missing sick little boy had been at the camp in recent weeks, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.
The sheriff said the small compound was composed of a partially-buried camper, a wall of tires, and an earthen berm. The property had no clean water, almost no food, and no hygienic products for the children who were wearing dirty rags and no shoes when authorities arrived.