Oath Keepers leader to remain in jail until Capitol riot trial | National government and new policies






FILE – This photo, provided by the Collin County Sheriff’s Office, shows Stewart Rhodes. A federal judge on Friday, Feb. 18, 2022, refused to release Oath Keepers founder Rhodes from jail pending trial for conspiring with other members of his far-right militia to attack the U.S. Capitol to prevent Congress to certify President Joe Biden’s election victory.


Uncredited – hogp, Collin County Sheriff’s Office


By MICHAEL KUNZELMAN – Associated Press

A federal judge on Friday refused to release Oath Keepers founder Stewart Rhodes as he awaits trial for conspiring with other members of his far-right militia to attack the U.S. Capitol to prevent Congress to certify Joe Biden’s electoral victory.

U.S. District Judge Amit Mehta said federal prosecutors presented “compelling if not strong” evidence against Rhodes, who has been the leader of the group since its inception in 2009. Rhodes poses a “clear and compelling danger” to the public, the judge said during a remote hearing.

“His ability to communicate and organize are his greatest weapons,” Mehta said, calling Rhodes an “extremely sophisticated individual.”

Rhodes and 10 others linked to the Oath Keepers are the first to be charged with seditious conspiracy in the January 6, 2021 attack on the Capitol. Four other Oath Keepers defendants charged with seditious conspiracy remain jailed pending trial in July.

Their January 12 indictment also charged Rhodes with obstruction of justice. Prosecutors say he tried to destroy electronic evidence of the alleged conspiracy from his cellphone.

Rhodes, 56, has been held in federal custody for his arrest in Little Elm, Texas, a day after his indictment. On January 26, a federal magistrate in Plano, Texas ordered him to be jailed pending trial. Rhodes’ lawyers asked Mehta to overturn that decision, but the judge denied that request.

About Jefferey G. Cannon

Check Also

Court weighs dispute over online publication of voting records | United States government and politics

By MORGAN LEE – Associated Press ALBUQUERQUE, NM (AP) — A conservative-backed foundation that aims …