Domestic terrorism cases differ from ordinary criminal activity in key ways. Most importantly, unlike ordinary criminals—who are often driven by self-centered motives such as profit and tend to opportunistically seek easy prey— domestic terrorists are driven by a cause or ideology. If the motives involved eventually align with the definition laid out in 18 U.S.C. §2331(5), presumably the case becomes a domestic terrorist investigation.
- The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) defines domestic terrorism as "acts of violence that [violate] the criminal laws of the United States or any state, committed by individuals or groups without any foreign direction, and appear to be intended to intimidate or coerce a civilian population, or influence the policy of a government by intimidation or coercion, and occur primarily within the territorial jurisdiction of the United States."
- The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) offers a similar definition..."
Domestic Terrorism & Violent Extremism