Members of the Oath Keepers discussed “pitchforks” and “a killing spree” when they stormed the US Capitol, the jury at their trial has been told.
‘Pitchforks time’ text at US riot trial
Prosecutors urged members of a jury to convict Oath Keepers founder Stewart Rhodes and four others for their roles in storming the US Capitol on January 6, 2021, saying they formed an “armed rebellion” to disrupt the peaceful transfer of power.
“They concocted a plan for an armed rebellion to shatter a bedrock of American democracy,” prosecutor Jeff Nestler said in an opening statement at their trial.
Rhodes told his followers during the planning stage that “it will be torches and pitchforks time if they (Congress) don’t do the right thing,” according to a text message shown to the jury by prosecutors.
Rhodes and his co-defendants Kelly Meggs, Thomas Caldwell, Jessica Watkins and Kenneth Harrelson are accused of plotting to forcefully prevent Congress from certifying Democratic President Joe Biden’s 2020 election victory in a failed bid to keep then-President Donald Trump, a Republican, in power.