Authored by Joseph M. Hanneman via The Epoch Times (emphasis ours),
A group of self-identified Antifa supporters who wanted “civil war and revolution” on Jan. 6 sought online blueprints for federal buildings so they could firebomb them and discussed using a Roman legion formation to attack police lines, a Sept. 15 court filing alleges.
Defendant William Pope of Topeka, Kansas, included the information in a renewed U.S. District Court push (pdf) to compel federal prosecutors to produce all bodycam footage and video filmed by Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) undercover officers on Jan. 6, 2021.
Mr. Pope, 37, publisher of the news website Free State Kansas, was at the Capitol on Jan. 6, covering the protest and subsequent violence.
Federal prosecutors charged him with civil disorder, corruptly obstructing an official proceeding, entering and remaining in a restricted building or grounds, disorderly and disruptive conduct in a restricted building or grounds, impeding ingress or egress in a restricted building or grounds, disorderly conduct in a Capitol building, impeding passage through the Capitol grounds or buildings, and parading, demonstrating or picketing in a Capitol building. He faces a July 2024 trial.
According to Pope’s latest motion, MPD officers made a traffic stop at 10:15 a.m. on Jan. 6 of a vehicle containing three Antifa operatives: Jonathan Kelly, Logan Grimes, and Dempsey Mikula.
“Undercover officers who stopped their vehicle said they had received reports that the individuals were carrying weapons,” Mr. Pope wrote. “No footage of this incident has been produced by the government in discovery. However, Kelly live-streamed part of the police stop to Facebook.”
Mr. Kelly refused to allow police to search his vehicle, so they sent for a dog to sniff the vehicle for contraband.
“A little over ten minutes into Kelly’s livestream, a team of uniformed MPD officers showed up to replace the undercover police,” Mr. Pope wrote. “These uniformed officers wore body cameras and instructed Kelly, Grimes, and Mikula to get out of the vehicle while they waited for the dog to arrive.”
At least two of the undercover officers who made the traffic stop were wearing colorful bracelets that identified them as members of MPD’s Electronic Surveillance Unit (ESU), which gathered intelligence and shot video around Washington and at the Capitol on Jan. 6.
Nearly 30 members of the Electronic Surveillance Unit were assigned to duty on Jan. 6, 2021, some of whom were gathering evidence on crowd activity. Members wore a special band on their left wrist to identify themselves as part of the unit, according to the MPD’s 96-page Jan. 6 action plan.
‘We Are Antifa’
The trio of Antifa adherents created a video of themselves singing “We are Antifa” on their drive from Michigan to Washington for the Jan. 6 events, according to a video exhibit filed by Mr. Pope with his motion.
Metropolitan Police arrested Mr. Grimes—who identifies as a woman and uses the name Leslie—for carrying a pistol without a license and being in possession of a high-capacity magazine and unregistered ammunition, according to Mr. Pope.
The U.S. Department of Justice “has deemed the Grimes arrest relevant enough to the Jan. 6 cases to produce body camera footage from the officer who transported Grimes from the scene of the arrest to the booking facility,” Mr. Pope wrote, “but the government has withheld recordings from the many other officers who were on scene during the stop, vehicle search, and arrest.”
Charges against Mr. Grimes were dropped a day later, on Jan. 7, 2021.
“This lack of prosecution compared to other January 6 cases and the fact that the government continues to hide information about the ESU officers who conducted the Antifa car stop and body camera recordings demonstrates the government is intentionally concealing information about this Antifa seditious conspiracy,” Mr. Pope wrote. “Such information is exculpatory in my case.”
The three Antifa operatives communicated using a server on the social media platform Discord. That server—nicknamed ‘Insurgence’—was managed by John Earle Sullivan, the Black Lives Matter activist who filmed the shooting of Ashli Babbitt near the House of Representatives on Jan. 6, Mr. Pope wrote.
Mr. Sullivan, 29, of Tooele, Utah, is charged with 10 Jan. 6 crimes, including civil disorder, obstruction of an official proceeding, unlawful possession of a dangerous weapon on Capitol grounds, disorderly and disruptive conduct in a restricted building or grounds with a dangerous or deadly weapon, and other federal charges. He faces an Oct. 23 trial in Washington.
“Individuals using Sullivan’s Antifa server began discussing plans to look up blueprints for ‘tax buildings’ online so they could firebomb them by throwing fireworks into broken windows,” Mr. Pope wrote. “In addition to this, Antifa co-conspirators on Sullivan’s server began sharing tactical plans for attacking police lines using a Roman legion formation.”
Discord Server Coordination
Mr. Kelly and Mr. Grimes “were clearly conspiring with John Sullivan using Sullivan’s online server,” Mr. Pope wrote. “On December 29, 2020, John Sullivan posted an image of firearms and tactical gear on his Antifa server along with the message: “Civil War and Revolution.”
Mr. Pope said he believes MPD undercover video and officer bodycam footage could contain more clues about communication and coordination between Mr. Sullivan and Antifa operatives.
“This makes all ESU recordings and bodycam recordings of Sullivan, Kelly, Grimes, Mikula, and any other conspiring Antifa relevant to my defense, and the government has a Brady [Supreme Court decision] obligation to produce all such recordings and any other tips or related materials in discovery,” Mr. Pope wrote. “This also further justifies my request for the court to grant my motion to compel the government to produce all ESU recordings and body-worn camera footage.”
At the top of the scaffolding near the police line on Jan. 6, Mr. Sullivan said, “This is a revolution, mother[expletives], let’s go, we taking this [expletive]!” Mr. Pope wrote. “After breaking through police lines, Sullivan said, ‘This [expletive] is ours’ and ‘we accomplished this [expletive].’
“Sullivan then yelled for people down on the lawn to ‘get up here.’”
Mr. Kelly, who wore a beige gas mask and carried a baseball bat, was the last person remaining on the southwest scaffolding at the Capitol and had to be removed by police, Mr. Pope wrote.
“Kelly and Mikula then faced off with police lines and stayed at the Capitol past the curfew,” Mr. Pope said.
Mr. Grimes and Mr. Kelly posted photos of themselves in the crowds near the Ellipse. Mr. Kelly “asked his Antifa co-conspirators on Sullivan’s server whether he should ‘start blasting [expletive] Donald Trump on my megaphone,’” Mr. Pope said. “This demonstrates that those conspiring with Sullivan had a general objective to cause chaos on January 6, 2021.”
In previous court filings, Mr. Pope disclosed how an undercover MPD officer assisted protesters in climbing over barricades and encouraged them to continue up the northwest steps to the Capitol. He was heard on video participating in crowd chants such as, “Whose House? Our House!”
More recently, Mr. Pope disclosed how MPD officers on the Capitol’s upper terrace retreated from one of the entrances, giving protesters free access to stream into the Capitol.
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