US U.S. judge detains two Proud Boys over role in storming Capitol
‘Proud Boy’ Ethan Nordean Says He Should Stay Out of Jail Because Guards Are Beating Capitol Siege Defendants
Ethan Nordean, the Seattle-area Proud Boys member also known as Rufio Panman to audiences on InfoWars with Alex Jones, is joining a chorus of complaints about defendants' treatment behind bars as they await further proceedings on charges connected to the breach of the U.S. Capitol Complex on Jan. 6. Nordean, who is free on bond, says the alleged mistreatment of other inmates should be taken into account by a federal judge. Prosecutors are asking that judge to send Nordean back to jail as he awaits trial. A three-page court filing by Nordean’s lawyers directly references a Politico report which claims guards at Washington, D.C.
By Sarah N. Lynch
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A federal judge on Monday ordered that two prominent leaders of the far-right Proud Boys group be detained for their roles in storming the U.S. Capitol, saying they posed a danger to the community and could not be trusted to abide by strict conditions of release.
The ruling by U.S. District Judge Timothy Kelly marked a small victory for the Justice Department, which had failed in two previous efforts to persuade the courts to detain Ethan "Rufio" Nordean of Auburn, Washington.
Kelly also ordered detention for one of Nordean's co-defendants, Joseph Biggs of Ormond Beach, Florida, who has remained in home confinement since his arrest in January.
Police officer with connection to Proud Boys fired
A California police department announced Friday that it fired one of its officers for having ties to the far-right extremist group Proud Boys. © Getty Police officer with connection to Proud Boys fired The Fresno Police Department terminated Rick Fitzgerald's employment following an investigation that began after the officer joined a Proud Boys event on March 14. Fitzgerald was placed on administrative leave following the incident while the department investigated, according to a statement the department shared to social media.pic.twitter.
The judge said in his ruling that Nordean and Biggs are charged with "gravely serious matters" and their leadership roles and lack of remorse all weighed in favor of detention.
In addition, Kelly added: "The evidence is overwhelming that Nordean and Biggs had a plan for that day."
Prosecutors have accused Nordean, Biggs and two other co-defendants of conspiring to take the Capitol by force to prevent Congress from certifying Democratic President Joe Biden’s election victory over Republican Donald Trump. The plot allegedly entailed urging group members to travel to Washington, obtaining paramilitary equipment and soliciting donations.
A third defendant in the case, Charles Donohue, was tentatively slated to appear before a magistrate judge later on Monday for a detention hearing.
Supreme Court halts California coronavirus rules that limit home worship
This is the latest case in which the high court has barred officials from enforcing coronavirus-related restrictions applying to religious gatherings.The 5-4 unsigned opinion, published just before midnight on Friday, highlighted the deep divisions over the issue, with Chief Justice John Roberts siding with three liberals who dissented. The court also noted that this was the fifth time it had overturned the California-based U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in similar cases.
Prosecutors have charged more than 410 people in the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol.
Nordean's defense attorneys have argued their client does not pose a threat, and pointed to flaws in the government's evidence.
In March, they provided a sworn statement from a former lead singer for the punk band the Misfits who said Nordean had invited him to play a private concert for the Proud Boys at their rowhouse rental on the afternoon of Jan. 6. They argued that plan was contrary to prosecutors' claims their client had plotted to topple the government.
Nordean's lawyers also pointed to seemingly contradictory statements that former acting U.S. Attorney Michael Sherwin made during an appearance on CBS' "60 Minutes," in which Sherwin said the government was still trying to determine whether rioters had a premeditated plan to breach the Capitol.
Kelly said Sherwin's interview was "highly unprofessional," but said he did not think it significantly weakened the prosecution's case.
(Reporting by Sarah N. Lynch; editing by Jonathan Oatis)
Proud Boys leaders from Florida, Seattle ordered into custody on new Capitol riot evidence .
Proud Boys leaders Ethan Nordean's and Joseph Biggs' Capitol insurrection conduct is a threat to "the very existence of our republic," said a judge.Judge Timothy Kelly granted the government's request that Ethan Nordean, 30, and Joseph Biggs, 37, be detained, a reversal of a previous judge's order that allowed them to be released to home confinement.