Capitol Riot Case: Anti-Fascist Preliminary Trial in Sacramento Postponed

Mike Williams

By Crescenzo Vellucci

Vanguard Court Watch

SACRAMENTO – A long-awaited preliminary trial for three anti-fascists – all facing charges stemming from a riot at the State Capitol in June of 2016 that left at least five anti-fascists injured and hospitalized – was postponed Friday here in Sacramento Superior Court. The new court date is Oct. 12.

Meanwhile, the only self-described Nazi charged in the melee – William Planer of Sacramento – will be put on trial Sept. 11 after a brief hearing this week. Planer, the only Nazi sympathizer charged although all of those stabbed were anti-fascists, remains in Sacramento County Jail on $600,000 bail on assault and rioting charges. A pre-trial hearing is July 31.

The anti-fascists charged, including Michael Williams of Woodland, Porfirio Paz and Yvonne Felarca, lost a May hearing in which their lawyers asked the court to dismiss all charges. They are all free on bail. Their lawyers – Ronald Cruz, Linda Parisi and Mark Reichel – appeared on their behalf Friday.

The court did agree to $50,000 warrants for prosecution witnesses Nigel Walker and Duncan MacKenzie who failed to appear. However, the warrants will be held until the next court date and not enforced.

The prosecution has been bizarre – the California Highway Patrol and Sacramento County District Attorney’s Office didn’t file charges until nearly a year after the Capitol riot. The CHP took heat from lawmakers and observers for not making arrests the day of the protests and injuries, despite being part of a combined police force of more than 150 officers.

Legal observers said the CHP and Sacramento City Police just watched the chaos happen, and did nothing to stop the clash between the Traditionalist Worker Party/Golden State Skinheads and anti-fascists groups.

Months ago, a “people’s tribunal” found Sacramento District Attorney Anne Marie Schubert and the California Highway Patrol guilty of “collusion” with fascist elements to target anti-fascist activists.

The 30-member People’s Tribunal determined, after hearing evidence – which was largely the motion to dismiss, that the DA and CHP were guilty of “collusion with Nazi’s,” and engaging in a “witchhunt” targeting anti-racist protestors. The Tribunal urged the DA to drop all charges against the anti-fascists.

Felarca insisted that if it had not been for Sacramento’s fascist experience, where nearly 200 visible CHP and Sacramento Police Department officers – on the ground, Capitol roof, on bikes and horses – apparently failed to respond to the armed fascist protestors, “Charlottesville and the death of a young woman would not have happened just weeks after anti-fascists were arrested in Sacramento.

“Our arrests here emboldened fascists to do what they did in Charlottesville, which we are convinced would not have happened had it not been for the failure to indict the fascists who attacked us in Sacramento…but now, we have the goods on them (the CHP, as the arresting agency, and the district attorney),” she said.

The dismissal motion claimed the three defendants’ rights are being violated,” charging that “evidence and analysis of the witchhunt targeting anti-fascist and anti-racist protesters Felarca, Paz, and Williams.

“If the prosecution of Felarca, Paz, and Williams proceeds, then Donald Trump will have already achieved one of his central aims: the substitution of authoritarianism for constitutional due process rights and democratic norms…A policy of naked state discrimination and persecution of racial minorities and left-wing political activists would be a fact and reality. The rule of law would be replaced by tyranny,” the motion asserted.

Lawyers who crafted the motion are not shy in indicting the Sacramento DA and CHP.

“The California Highway Patrol and Sacramento District Attorney covered-up for and colluded with the fascists and are carrying out a political witch-hunt against Felarca and other anti-fascist protesters, in violation of their right to freedom of speech and association and their right to equal protection under the law (1st and 14th Amendments). The criminal charges brought against Felarca, Paz, and Williams are a political witch-hunt and constitute discrimination based on political viewpoint and race in violation of the First and Fourteenth Amendments,” the motion states.

At the Tribunal, Felarca, acting as, in effect, the lead prosecutor, explained that “the victims (she and the other defendants) are the ones facing charges, not the fascists,” who she suggested are being protected possibly because they are “informants or agents or assets to law enforcement.”

Felarca – who sustained a concussion and received 24 stitches after she was attacked – cited sections of the CHP evidence against her that recounted how the CHP promised to protect the Traditional Workers Party member who obtained the permit to the fateful Capitol rally. CHP officers on an audio recording said they would “redact” his name from those filing public records requests to protect him.

The CHP had photographs of fascists with weapons, “but those fascists were not arrested. Many cops are either fascist sympathizers or fascists themselves,” said Felarca, an elementary school teacher.

The Tribunal noted that two Black men stabbed and hospitalized for up to two weeks were nearly arrested themselves, even though they were not the aggressors. One was a photographer. The CHP noted the two had given a “clenched fist salute,” and suggested they must be radicals because of it, said Felarca.

“This is classic red-baiting. These are not police reports but political dossiers,” claimed defense lawyers, who explained, “It was and is widely known that (white power groups) came to the Capitol grounds on June 26, 2016 armed with knives and stabbed at least seven anti-fascist demonstrators, all but one black, Latina/o and Asian anti-fascists.”

“The police and DA’s policy of allowing Nazi’s to get away with attempted murder in Sacramento and pursuing charges against the anti-racists who stood up to them set the stage for the lynch-mobs and murder in Charlottesville a year later. The blood of Heather Heyer is on the hands of the California Highway Patrol, the Sacramento Police, and DA Schubert,” according to the motion to dismiss.

“The CHP and the DA’s cover-up and collusion with the fascists in Sacramento sent a message to (Traditionalist Workers Party) TWP leader Matthew Heimbach, the main organizer of the Sacramento demonstration as well as a central organizer and participant in the August 11-12, 2017 ‘Unite the Right’ rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, that he and his racist thugs could commit murder in broad daylight and get away with it.

“(By) allowing the fascists to get away with their attack at the State Capitol in 2016 set off a chain of events that began with the near-murders in Sacramento and ended with the murder of Heather Heyer in Charlottesville,” according to the motion to dismiss.


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20 Comments

  1. John Hobbs

    “Legal observers said the CHP and Sacramento City Police just watched the chaos happen, and did nothing to stop the clash between the Traditionalist Worker Party/Golden State Skinheads and anti-fascists groups.”

    That’s what we get for two decades of coddling fascist bullies.

  2. Alan Miller

    I’m glad to see that the Vanguard is now engaging and dark satirical comedy. I hope that we will soon be seeing murderers and drug dealers  acting as mock prosecutors in the tribunals and getting a report on it in the Vanguard. This is definitely a step forward

  3. Alan Miller

    Also, except for the first couple paragraphs which talk of postponement, not exactly big news, this is just a reprint of articles from months ago.

        1. Jeff M

          Yes it does.

          I laugh when I hear the term “antifa” or “anti-fascist”… it is like the KKK branding themselves as pro-civil rights.

          Unfortunately for the Democrats the party leadership has not done anything to separate themselves from these militant punks.  Nor have they done enough to separate themselves from the fools calling for Marxism.  Instead of defending the Democrat brand from these extreme elements thus risking the ire of the cohort of angry, violent and foolish young people, the party apparatus has decided they can leverage their strong media control and out-negative brand the Republicans under Trump.  The problem for the Democrats though, other than the risk that they constant negative platform being unappealing to the moderate and independent voters, is that they will end up making a deal with little monsters that will begin to assume leadership places in the party and will absolutely destroy the party.

          However, with respect to this case there is some common ground between the sides.  Both in Charlottesville and in Sacramento, the police were told to stand down and allow the melee to ensue.  With respect to Charlottesville even though the Antifa thugs did not have a permit to counter protest where the white supremacists thugs had a permit to march and thus the Antifa thugs were most at fault for the violence that ensued, the fact that the cops were not allowed to insert themselves into the fights to break them up and make arrests, resulted in a lot of injury and the death of one girl.   And in Sacramento, even though both sides had permits, the Antifa thugs purposely provoked the violence and the cops also just stood by watching.

          I believe that we need protest laws that require conflicting sides to keep at least 30 ft distance and any provoking or action of physical violence should immediate cause for arrest and criminal prosecution.  And any protestor wearing a mask or any object or clothing meant to conceal identity should also be cause for arrest and criminal prosecution.

        2. Alan Miller

          > And any protestor wearing a mask or any object or clothing meant to conceal identity should also be cause for arrest and criminal prosecution.

          Amen to that!

        3. Jim Hoch

          “I find your comment ironic – there is no crime in concealing one’s identity.”

          That was not the determination of our Tribunal! I find it ironic you would discount our tribunal that way.

        4. Jeff M

          I find your comment ironic – there is no crime in concealing one’s identity.

          Yes, and the KKK thanks you for that.

          Note that liberal France won’t allow face coverings.  The EU needs people to show their face for all that ubiquitous camera security face-recognition technology.

          I am suggesting that we criminalize it for those claiming to be peaceful protestors.  Of course those claiming to be violent protestors should be arrested immediately regardless of mask status.

        5. David Greenwald

          My view is we should punish people who actually do something that is illegal.  Putting on a mask isn’t illegal.  However, committing violence is.  Punish those people.

        6. Alan Miller

          I find your comment ironic – there is no crime in concealing one’s identity.

          Try walking into a bank with a mask on and see what happens.

        7. Jim Hoch

          “However, committing violence is.  Punish those people.”

          When a bunch of violent thugs run their own kangaroo court that result is unlikely.

  4. Howard P

    Unfortunately for the Democrats the party leadership has not done anything to separate themselves from these militant punks.  Nor have they done enough to separate themselves from the fools calling for Marxism.  Instead of defending the Democrat brand from these extreme elements thus risking the ire of the cohort of angry, violent and foolish young people, the party apparatus has decided they can leverage their strong media control and out-negative brand the Republicans under Trump.  The problem for the Democrats though, other than the risk that they constant negative platform being unappealing to the moderate and independent voters, is that they will end up making a deal with little monsters that will begin to assume leadership places in the party and will absolutely destroy the party.

    Substitute the word “democrat” with the word “republican”, and vice versa… Substitute the name Trump with any leading democrat of your choice. Substitute “marxism” with the words “rabid conservatism”:

    Equally true, and a great shame for both “parties”…

    1. Jerry Waszczuk

      One party is leaning or akin closely  to the  former Spain’s Francisco Franco regime and other to  Italian regime  of Benito Mussolini with.  Marxism is in North Korea and Cuba . Marxism does not paly any part  in USA  politicks . Elites of both parties are bussines oriented folks and they don’t look to have American  flag with red stars on .

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