The Oklahoman reported that on Friday, Oklahoma County District Attorney David Prater charged several participants in the violent protests which occurred on May 30 and 31 with terrorism, rioting, and assault.
Prater told reporters that, “This is not Seattle. We’re not putting up with this lawlessness here.” He hopes that this “get-tough approach” will deter others from going too far during protests in the future.
The newspaper reports:
Also charged Friday were five defendants identified as involved in the painting of murals in downtown Oklahoma City this week. They are accused in an incitement to riot charge of interfering with a police sergeant who was trying to take a homicide witness for an interview at police headquarters Tuesday.
In court affidavits filed with the charges, police claimed that several agitators during the May 30 protest stayed to the center to keep the crowd in an agitated state.
“Several people were carrying flags that were identified as belonging to the following groups: Antifa, Soviet Union (communism), American Indian Movement, Anarcho-Communism (solid red) and the original Oklahoma flag … currently adopted by Oklahoma Socialists,” police reported.
“Several known supporters of anti-establishment organizations were present in the crowd.”
One person was charged for two counts of terrorism. He allegedly burned a sheriff’s van and tried to set fire to a bail bonds business “along with a large crowd of other individuals.”
Another was charged in the burning of the van and for encouraging the “wanton destruction” and recording it on Facebook Live. On the Facebook video, he says that, everyone who kills Black people “needs to die” and “that’s what happens when you got numbers outside.”
A third individual is charged in the burning of the van. According to The Oklahoman, he “was identified as a suspect from a Facebook video that shows him with brass knuckles on a bloody hand outside the bail bond business. He is accused of breaking the windows.”
Four others were charged with rioting. An additional suspect was charged with assault and battery upon a police officer. He is alleged to have shoved an officer while he was arresting another protester. He also was carrying a pistol and was wearing a bullet-proof vest. And five others were charged with incitement to riot over a separate incident.
The ages of those charged ranged from 18 to 33.
It’s refreshing to hear of a district attorney who is interested in enforcing the law, a government official who is not afraid to hold those who break the law accountable instead of making excuses for them.
These individuals were not exercising their First Amendment rights to peaceful assembly. They were destroying property which is a criminal offense and they are being made to face the consequences.
Most Americans have been dismayed that more people who have been responsible for the widespread violence and destruction have not faced justice. President Trump told Sean Hannity that over a hundred people have been charged so far. If that is so, the American people would like to know about it.
Kudos to D.A. Prater and may we see more of this please.