Tag: Jan

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Prosecutors urge jail before trial for Jan. 6 rioter with history of violence, Hitler praise

Prosecutor Motion for Pretrial Detention Beddingfield March 1 by Daily Kos on Scribd

Beddingfield was first identified by an online community, known as “Sedition Hunters,” that pores over footage of the assault. He can allegedly be seen hoisting a large metal flagpole as a weapon during the attack, the flag still attached, as he advances on police officers positioned around the Capitol.

Breaching the police barricades, he is also seen, according to an affidavit filed by FBI Special Agent Brian Surer, throwing that flagpole (or what could be a piece of a metal barricade) at officers and later clashing with them.  

He eventually made his way into the Capitol Rotunda and later, prosecutors allege, attempted to storm the Senate wing. Once inside, he again used the flagpole to beat back officers, but was repelled by a chemical irritant. 

His history of violence and his conduct on Jan. 6 demand that he stay in jail before trial, prosecutors argued in a 19-page motion filed in a federal court in Washington, D.C. 

But those aren’t the only concerns that prosecutors had. 

When law enforcement recovered Beddingfield’s phone after his arrest, they discovered a trove of “highly offensive and highly troubling hate symbols and hate speech” on the device. 

“In some of the messages and exchanges […] Beddingfield unabashedly expresses his wish that members of those groups meet a violent end, and in others he expresses a desire to inflict said violence or death on the same. Some of the images found on Beddingfield’s cell phone include, but are not limited to, images of SS Bolts, swastikas (sometimes with hate language superimposed over the swastika’s four arms), numerous images and memes featuring Hitler, and other antisemitic, anti-Black, and anti-LGBTQ+ memes and caricatures,” the memo states. 

One of the photos prosecutors highlighted in its memo was one allegedly depicting Beddingfield giving a Nazi salute at the Capitol on Jan. 6. 

“It is significant that Beddingfield took the time to make what is likely a Nazi gesture toward the Capitol after violently assaulting and confronting law enforcement. There is a connection in Beddingfield’s white supremacist views and the physical manifestations thereof and his violent acts,” prosecutors argued.

Footage from the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol shows a man who appears to be Beddingfield giving a Nazi salute.

His advocacy of white supremacy and Nazisim long predated his conduct at the Capitol, prosecutors argued, pointing to a trail of “vile” social media posts Beddingfield published online that promoted not just white supremacy but his desire to “see violence befall members of minority groups and marginalized communities.” 

All of this was “topped with the urge to cause that pain and death himself,” U.S. attorneys wrote. 

Notably, government prosecutors say they are not trying to punish Beddingfield for his abhorrent beliefs or political views, let alone keep him detained for those reasons expressly:

“The government believes that Beddingfield should be detained because Beddingfield was on release for a violent shooting at the time of his crimes on Jan. 6, he assaulted officers with the American flag, he was arrested for another crime in which he endangered members of the public (reckless driving) after Jan. 6, during his commission of the violent acts at the Capitol, he publicly displayed a gesture that has strong associations with white supremacy and the Holocaust, and his other violent rhetoric establishes his penchant for matching violent words with violent acts.”

And even when he was released on bail for the attempted murder charge, prosecutors say he used his Instagram and Snapchat accounts to post racist missives for months, writing things like “Kill yourself n—–r-loving whore,” or “Heil Hitler, you’re a n—-r-lover that’s why you have monkey lives matter in your bio.”

In the weeks just before his arrest, he was still at it, boasting on Instagram: “I’d like to reclaim America and it is fine if a few of my people’s enemies are ‘hurt’ in the process.” 

He also told women online that he hoped they would be raped and killed. In a debate online on Feb. 5, Beddingfield told a person advocating for LGBT rights: “You have no values and the only tragedy that happened was Hitler didn’t finish the job.”

Search warrants also turned up thousands of rounds of .22 caliber ammunition in Beddingfield’s closet, along with four long guns, including two AK-style rifles, four handguns, and more ammo. The FBI also recovered a pair of Nike shoes that appear to match the ones Beddingfield was seen wearing on Jan. 6. 

Beddingfield next appears in court on March 10 where a decision on whether he will remain in jail ahead of his trial will likely be rendered. 



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