The FBI raided the homes of two men who organized a rally near the U.S. Capitol a day before the deadly siege at which they spewed violent, battle-ready rhetoric, the first known search warrants for those involved in rallies before the attack, CNN reported on Wednesday.
The FBI confirmed that agents carried out search warrants last week at two properties in Orange County, California that belong to Russell Taylor and Alan Hostetter, who run the American Phoenix Project, which co-sponsored a rally to back President Donald Trump near the Supreme Court on Jan. 5, one day before the Capitol riot.
Neither man has been charged with any crimes, and the FBI declined to comment further about the raids, noting that the case files are still sealed.
Footage of the rally shows Hostetter telling the crowd to prepare for “war tomorrow” against “vipers” in Congress who refused to nullify Joe Biden’s election victory, adding that “Our voices tomorrow are going to put the fear of God in the cowards and the traitors, the (Republicans in name only), the communists of the Democrat Party, they need to know we as a people, a hundred million strong, are coming for them if they do the wrong thing.”
In his speech, Taylor said “We will not return to our peaceful way of life until this election is made right,” stressing that “In these streets we will fight, and we will bleed before we allow our freedom to be taken from us.”
Taylor’s lawyer said that during the Capitol riot, Taylor was “outside” but “never entered the building nor did he cause any damage to the building.”
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