OPINION – The controversial leader of the ultra-conservative, western-chauvinist, ‘Proud Boys’ group, Henry “Enrique” Tarrio, is currently serving a five-month sentence at the decrepit and foul DC central jail. His crime wasn’t participating in the Capital riot because Tarrio wasn’t even in DC on January 6.
He was arrested in Washington on an inane misdemeanor warrant two days before the riot and ordered to stay out of the nation’s capital.
So, what was his crime?
Burning a BLM flag taken from the property of a DC church much earlier. Yup. Burning a flag. That’s it. This would be laughable if not so concerning.
He also had two EMPTY pistol magazines with him when finally arrested. Since any magazine that can hold over 10 rounds is considered ‘high capacity” in DC, he was charged with that as well. NBC News reported:
Tarrio pleaded guilty to destruction of property and attempted possession of a large-capacity ammunition feeding device. Police said officers found two unloaded firearm magazines emblazoned with the Proud Boys logo in Tarrio’s bag when they arrested him on Jan. 4.
Whatever anyone may think of Tarrio or the Proud Boys (far left groups call it ‘far right,’ ‘extremist’ and a ‘hate’ group), his crime here was as minor as it gets, especially considering the violence and mayhem caused by both BLM/Antifa rioters in the summer of 2020, and those rioting at the Capitol on January 6.
This appears to be another case of selective political persecution rather than any type of reasonable justice or prosecution.
However, along with defendants also charged with minor crimes from the January 6 riot, Tarrio claims he has endured “serious abuses of his rights on a daily basis” while being held in a segregation unit at the DC jail.
According to Tarrio, jail employees have ignored his requests for medical treatment, thrown cold, often inedible meals into his cell and denied him access to running water in his cell.
“Mr. Tarrio has been intimidated and antagonized by correctional staff to dissuade him from making complaints about the horrendous conditions,” wrote Tarrio’s attorney, Lucas Dansie.
NBC reports that:
Several Jan. 6 defendants have filed suits about the D.C. jail facility. One of those cases led to a surprise U.S. Marshals Service inspection last month, which found systemic abuse and unsanitary conditions.
A federal judge later found both the jail’s warden and the director of the corrections department in contempt of court…
The Justice Department announced plans to transfer 400 federal prisoners from a total population of about 1,500 to another facility in Pennsylvania. However, Tarrio and the other Jan. 6 defendants were not set to be part of that transfer.
Tarrio on Monday cited the federal prisoner transfer as proof that the D.C. jail was simple unfit to continue operating.
He told the judge, “They don’t move 400 prisoners for nothing.”
Tarrio has asked that his sentence be reduced to 90-days or that he be allowed to finish it under house arrest because of the harassment by correctional officers and inhumane jail conditions.
But my question is – Why is anyone serving five months for burning a BLM? And — when will Tarrio be released early for this travesty?
Considering the lack of prosecution for hundreds of violent BLM/Antifa rioters in DC, this is not equal justice under the law. This is yet another example of selective, political persecution.
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