Iced Earth’s Jon Schaffer Facing Six Federal Charges, Had ‘Bear Spray’ At Capitol Riot
Iced Earth founder Jon Schaffer was arrested on Jan. 17 in his home state of Indiana after appearing on the FBI's 'Most Wanted' list following the guitarist's participation in the pro-Trump insurrection at the U.S. Capitol Building on Jan. 6. The FBI has named the six federal charges he now faces and new photos show he was carrying 'bear spray' while inside the government building.
The United States Department of Justice has a public-facing web page which details the arrests made so far in connection with the Capitol riot, for which President Donald Trump was impeached for a historic second time, this time for "incitement of insurrection."
The page indicates an arrest was made for Jon Ryan Schaffer in the southern district of Indiana, where a 'criminal complaint' form (United States of America v. Jon Ryan Schaffer, seen below) and a 'statement of facts' sheet have been made available as well.
Part of the 'statement of facts' document provides additional photos of the Iced Earth founder inside the Capitol during the time of the riot, equipped with 'bear spray' in his hand and seen among rioters who were discharging the spray.
The allegation reads as follows:
Schaffer was among the rioters who sprayed United States Capitol Police officers with 'bear spray,' a form of capsaicin pepper spray sold by many outdoors retailers, as part of their efforts to push the officers back inside the Capitol and breach the Capitol Building themselves. Schaffer was photographed and captured on surveillance video carrying “bear spray” and engaging in verbal altercations with Capitol Police officers inside the Capitol Building. Schaffer is seen holding a clear sunglasses in one photograph, and bear spray in other photographs.
The six federal charges listed against Schaffer are:
— Knowingly Entering or Remaining in any Restricted Building or Grounds Without Lawful Authority
— Disrupting the Orderly Conduct of Government Business
— Knowingly Engages in an Act of Physical Violence Against any Person or Property in any Restricted Building or Grounds
— Violent Entry and Disorderly Conduct in a Capitol Building
— Engage in an Act of Physical Violence in a Capitol Building
— Parade, Demonstrate, or Picket in a Capitol Building
The widely circulated photo of Schaffer at the Capitol (seen at the top of the page) shows him wearing a blue hoodie, black fingerless gloves and a hat that reads “Oath Keepers Lifetime Member.” The Oath Keepers is a far-right anti-government militia organization that was formed in 2009.
The Southern Poverty Law Center, an organization that regularly identifies hate groups and other domestic threats to civility, said this of the Oath Keepers:
The Oath Keepers, which claims tens of thousands of present and former law enforcement officials and military veterans as members, is one of the largest radical anti-government groups in the U.S. today. While it claims only to be defending the Constitution, the entire organization is based on a set of baseless conspiracy theories about the federal government working to destroy the liberties of Americans.
Prior to the events of Jan. 6, Schaffer attended a Washington D.C. pro-Trump rally on Nov. 15, eight days after the Presidential race was called for Joe Biden. While there, he gave a video interview to German media outlet Die Welt, detailing why he was there and his thoughts on potential for violence at the rally.
The full transcription from the posted interview (via Blabbermouth) has been replicated in its entirety below.
My name is Jon Schaffer. I'm from Indiana.
A group of thugs and criminals hijacked this country a long time ago. Now they're making their big move, and it's not gonna happen. And that's what it is. These are globalists. These are the scum of the earth. These are the criminals that are behind all the fraudulent fee on currency, they're behind all the wars, they're behind all the shit, they're behind divide-and-conquer tactics, behind the racial divide. It's all nonsense, it's all garbage.
People need to wake up and snap out of the matrix, because they're going down. They've made the move. They're messing with the wrong people here — trust me on that. And we needed it to be open like this — open fraud, open theft. Because now we see you, and you're going down. Mark my words.
If somebody wants to bring violence, I think there's a lot of us here that are ready for it. We don't want that, but if they bring it, we're gonna respond to that — trust me.
I think this goes beyond President Trump. President Trump is a populist. He's not your typical Republican. He's not establishment. He's not going out starting wars all over the place, like they do. Which is funny — where are all the Democrats that were anti-war?
There's so much hatred for Trump, it's just ridiculous. He's dealing with a criminal mafia that has been in the shadows running the world, frankly, for a very long time. They wanna destroy all of our sovereignty and bring about global government.
We're not having it. We can still do business together, the countries can still be at peace, but we're not gonna merge into some globalist, communist system. It will not happen. There will be a lot of blood shed, if it comes down to that — trust me.
The American people will not go for that bullshit — once they understand what's actually happening. So, that's where we're at. Nobody wants this, but they're pushing us to a point where we have no choice.
We will continue to update this story as more information becomes available.