US Three Percenters militia members charged in U.S. Capitol attack
Six Members of 'Three Percenters' Militia Indicted on Capitol Riot Charges
One of the men indicted on federal charges allegedly messaged his co-defendants about desiring to "be on the front steps and be one of the first ones to breach the doors" of the Capitol.Among those indicted Thursday were Alan Hostetter, 56, and Russell Taylor, 40—key members of a group called the American Phoenix Project. As leaders of the group, they organized a Washington, D.C. protest in support of former President Donald Trump's false claims of a "stolen" 2020 presidential election one day before they allegedly took part in the Capitol riot. Both of their homes were raided by the FBI in late January.
By Jan Wolfe and Mark Hosenball
WASHINGTON (Reuters) -U.S. prosecutors have charged six members of the right-wing Three Percenters militia group with conspiring to attack the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, an indictment unsealed on Thursday in federal court in Washington showed.
Federal prosecutors previously brought similar conspiracy cases against members of two other right-wing groups, The Oath Keepers and The Proud Boys. Those pending cases are the largest and most complex of the roughly 500 brought by the Justice Department in the months since the deadly attack carried out by supporters of former President Donald Trump.
Feds charge members of Three Percenters militia group over Jan. 6 attack
The Department of Justice (DOJ) announced on Thursday that six members of the Three Percenters right-wing militia group have been charged with conspiring to attack the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6.All six men - Alan Hostetter, Russell Taylor, Eric Scott Warner, Felipe Antonio "Tony" Martinez, Derek Kinnison and Ronald Mele - are from California.According to the DOJ, they first began to form their plan in December 2020 through the use of the Telegram messaging app. They chose to go to D.C. on Jan. 6 because of tweet from former President Trump that read: "Big protest in D.C. on January 6th. Be there, will be wild!" prosecutors allege.
Six men, all from California, were charged in the indictment: Alan Hostetter, Russell Taylor, Eric Scott Warner, Felipe Antonio "Tony" Martinez, Derek Kinnison and Ronald Mele.
According to the indictment, Hostetter founded a group in 2020 called the American Phoenix Project that protested restrictions on public gatherings imposed as a public health measure during the COVID-19 pandemic. That group became a platform to advocate violence against government leaders, according to the indictment.
Hostetter and Taylor had appeared with Roger Stone, a long-time friend and adviser of Trump, outside the U.S. Supreme Court at a protest against the outcome of the 2020 presidential election the day before the Capitol riot.
Trump granted a pardon to Stone in December, wiping away his conviction arising from a federal investigation that documented Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. election.
The pro-Trump mob stormed the Capitol, interrupted the formal congressional certification of President Joe Biden's election victory, clashed with an overwhelmed police force, and invaded the House of Representatives and Senate chambers. Five people died.
(Reporting by Jan Wolfe; Editing by Leslie Adler and Will Dunham)
The Geophysicist Who Stormed the Capitol .
Jeffrey Sabol lived in a quiet Colorado town and had some doubts about government spending. On January 6, he was photographed with a baton in his hand on the Capitol terrace. How does someone cross the threshold from belief to action?It was a scene from the Capitol riots on January 6. Amid a throng of rioters outside the building’s western terrace tunnel was a figure wearing a tan Carhartt jacket, teal backpack, steel-toed boots and black tactical helmet. The article identified the man as Bergman’s longtime friend, Jeffrey Sabol. In the video, Sabol vaulted over a railing and appeared to drag a defenseless cop down a set of stairs.