Jacksonville Residents React To Charges Against Robert Fox

Authorities hunting for Jacksonville House of Israel leader Robert Fox say they've made contact with some of his associates.

A warrant is out on Fox for a charge of barratry, which could be punished by 10 years in prison.

While police won't say who they've made contact with, they do say that these people have first hand knowledge and evidence of Fox's activities.

Today, Jacksonville residents tell KLTV 7's Danielle Capper they still don't know how someone with alleged ties to terrorists could live here for so long.

For most residents Robert Fox was a fairly unknown character.

He was seen around town, but the news of his links to known terrorists has come as a real shock.

"It's shocking to me. It's unbelievable really. I'm trying to see how to tie Jacksonville into something to do with terrorism," said Zetra Hill, a minister and lifelong resident of Jacksonville.

"That is pretty serious stuff when you have links to the Taliban, especially in the environment we are in now," James Houser told us today. "You wonder when they were going to start targeting smaller cities."

"It's really scary. I mean, it's a little town, nobody suspects anything. It would be real easy to do something down here." said Sabrina Kegley.

Residents here in downtown Jacksonville were aware of Dr. Barry Brooks dental practice, but he also was working with Robert Fox, who had a legal practice here. They were both operating under the Matthew 25 mission, which means to set the captives free, believing the government is corrupt and evil and should be out of their lives.

"I don't think you know anybody until you actually do some investigation. We trust our police force to take the appropriate action as well as state and federal governments," said Houser today.

Many spoke of trust in local authorities who are still looking for Fox.

Friday, they held this press conference to get help from federal authorities.

But as to his group and the followers that too has baffled locals.

"I would hope that there wouldn't be a lot of followers, but I don't know," said Ann Chandler.

"They're not very public with their actions there," said Keary Tobler.

"It must be a secret I guess you know, keep it among themselves. I guess that's the best way to do it," said Zetra Hill.

In addition to the barratry charge, Robert Fox was already out on bail for drug related charges and charges of practicing law without a license.

Danielle Capper, reporting. dcapper@kltv.com