2 sergeants accused of stealing ammunition from Fairchild Air Force Base

AIRWAY HEIGHTS, Wash. – Two Fairchild Air Force sergeants are facing charges in a scheme to steal thousands of rounds of ammunition from the U.S. Air Force. 

Sergeants John I. Sanger and Eric A. Eagleton are charged with conspiracy to commit theft of government property. 

A release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office says the two men and others engaged in the conspiracy this past March. As part of the scheme, they are alleged to have falsified records at Fairchild Air Force Base to conceal the theft. 

An affidavit shows the Inland Northwest Joint Terrorism Task Force began its investigation into Sanger in August of 2021. 

Records state Sanger discussed committing acts of violence to further his political agenda on social media. 

He allegedly stated “I think capital (sic) needs to be seized… No trial or chance to escape” and “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, the U.S. Air Force used an active-duty undercover USAF agent to talk to Sanger through an encrypted chat platform. Court records say Sanger acknowledged he is a racist and blamed the US’ “woes on Jews and African Americans.” 

In early March 2022, Sanger advised the undercover agent that he had recently met an Airman assigned to the Combat Arms Training Management (CATM) section at Fairchild. 

Sanger reportedly told the undercover agent that several members of the CATM regularly steal ammunition and that he was asked to join them for a shoot at the Fishtrap Lake shooting range. 

Sanger then invited the undercover agent to join. 

Sanger and the undercover agent then met Sgt. Eagleton, who is assigned to the CATM, at a truck stop before target shooting. 

Court records show Eagleton detailed stealing up to 3,000 rounds in a day and dividing the stolen ammunition between all members of the CATM section. This conversation was captured by the undercover agent, who was wearing an audio recording device. 

The affidavit shows Eagleton removed an unmarked firearm suppressor from the back of his truck. He also told the undercover agent about his anti-Semitic views. 

The undercover agent observed the men shooting ammunition from cans similar that resembled those used for combat training. The affidavit says the packing material was consistent with munitions used by the USAF for combat arms training. 

After the shooting, Sanger reportedly gave the undercover agent roughly 60 stolen green tip rounds. 

In late March, Sanger and the undercover agent again exchanged texts regarding plans to meet Eagleton to get more stolen ammunition. 

Eagleton and Sanger met in the Northern Quest Resort and Casino parking lot the next day. 

The affidavit says Eagleton was witnessed and photographed opening the top of an ammunition can and showing the contents to Sanger before handing over the entire can. The meet-up was also captured by surveillance cameras. 

The two men now face charges of conspiracy to commit theft of government property and possession of stolen ammunition. The offenses can carry a prison sentence of up to five years.

4 News Now reached out Fairchild Air Force Base and a spokesperson provided this statement:

“We are aware of the arrest of the Airmen stationed here at Fairchild Air Force Base and are working closely with federal law enforcement authorities to provide all relevant information to assist in their investigation. Additional information will be released as appropriate as the situation unfolds. For additional questions, please refer to the Department of Justice

The US Department of the Air Force also provided a statement regarding the investigation:

“The Department of the Air Force does not tolerate extremists in our ranks. We are fully cooperating with the Department of Justice on this case.”