While the alleged threats by James Reardon, Jr. against the Jewish Community Center of Youngstown caught some off guard, it was no surprise to a journalist from our print partner The Vindicator.

"I got to see him at three different stages of what I would say was his radicalization," said Graig Graziosi, a reporter for The Vindicator.

Graziosi was in college shooting a documentary about then-candidate Donald Trump in 2015 when he met James Reardon, Jr. at the Canfield Fair.

He says Reardon was like many supporters; he was enthused about Trump taking on the establishment.

Two years later, they met again at a protest against a local Trump critic, and this time, Reardon was different. 

"He had an Identity Evropa flag. He definitely had a lot more; he was styling himself after Nazi's like Richard Spencer, alt-right types," he said. 

They met one more time after Reardon marched alongside other white nationalists in Charlottesville, Virginia, for the rally called Unite the Right.

"I asked him straight out if people should be afraid of him and at that point in time he told me, no, and he denied being a Nazi," Graziosi said. "He said that he was supportive of a white ethnostate."

When Graziosi asked if violence would be required to get to that point in society, he says Reardon didn't have much of answer. 

Reardon was no stranger to local law enforcement and was known for supporting white nationalism. 

With the number of online groups promoting a radical ideology, Graziosi says he wasn't surprised with the apparent turn of events in Reardon's life. 

University of Maryland Distinguished Professor Arie Kruglanski teaches courses focusing on violent extremism.

He says white supremacists are more prevalent than we may think.

"There are hundreds of these groups across the country, and they have been plotting dangerous plots to an increasing extent over the last several years," Kruglanski said.

He says websites and social media help to perpetuate inspiration for targeted attacks.

Meanwhile, a JCC spokesperson tells 21 News they are open for business and feel safe. The center remains on heightened security in the wake of Reardon's arrest.