As more charges roll in related to the attack on the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, prosecutors are identifying some of the riot's main instigators as being members of the far-right group Proud Boys and the far-right militia group Oath Keepers, the Daily Beast reports.
Throughout their existence, the Proud Boys have billed themselves as immovable supporters of law enforcement. But according to a new indictment unsealed Friday, Proud Boys leaders Charles Donohoe, Zach Rehl, and two other members of the group plotted to overrun police at the Capitol.
"Everything is compromised and we can be looking at Gang charges," Donohoe allegedly wrote on Jan. 4, urging Proud Boys to abandon an old communication channel. According to the Beast's report, another Proud Boy on the morning of Jan. 6 allegedly used the channel to warn others that "cops are the primary threat, don't get caught by them or BLM."
Later that day, Proud Boys breached the building, battling with police with stolen riot shields and tools.
"The Proud Boys sometimes navigate their complicated relationship with the law by describing themselves and police as mutual enemies of anti-fascists," the Beast's Kelly Weill writes. "At a Proud Boy rally in Portland last summer, where journalists detailed apparent coordination between the group and police, one Proud Boy reportedly asked two officers 'when are y'all taking the patches off and just gonna fuck these motherfuckers [anti-fascists] up together?' The officers reportedly laughed."
Read the full article over at The Daily Beast.