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June 9, 2014

“Dawn of a New Day”: Las Vegas Shooter’s Final Message

The most recent entry on Jerad Miller’s Facebook, left on Saturday, June 7, is chilling: “The dawn of a new day. May all of our coming sacrifices be worth it.”jerad-amanda-miller

Jerad Miller, along with his wife Amanda, are the two suspects who committed suicide in a Las Vegas Walmart on Sunday, after allegedly fatally shooting two Las Vegas police officers in a nearby restaurant and a third person at the Walmart itself.

Based on their Internet writings, Jerad and Amanda Miller were both right-wing anti-government extremists of the “Patriot” movement variety, believing in all the common militia-type conspiracy theories about the “New World Order,” including concentration camps for Americans, coming martial law, and chemtrails, among others.

Some of Jerad’s postings in the months before the Las Vegas incident seem to reflect a growing radicalization. In March, Jerad declared that he had “compromised enough” and that he was “prepared to die” for his convictions about freedom and tyranny. “The day of your judgment will come,” he wrote, “not from my hand, for you will make me a martyr…Come for me, free me from your slavery. Give me the death a hero deserves. Help wake the masses to your corruption and treason. I f*****g dare you!”

In April, Jerad Miller travelled to the scene of the Cliven Bundy standoff, hoping that it “could be the next Waco and start of [the] revolution.”   In early May, Miller claimed that “there is no greater cause to die for than liberty” and that he would willingly do so. “Death, in a sense is freedom from tyranny,” he posted. Miller claimed that he and his wife “will not submit to fascist rule” and “are willing to sacrifice everything.”

Amanda Miller also had anti-government and conspiratorial beliefs. “Every day I realize how more and more people are asleep and only a few of us are awake,” she wrote in 2012. “The government is trying to take away our rights…only the few of us are willing to fight back.” Miller stated that she was “proud to be awake to see what[‘]s really going on.”

The anger that the Millers felt at the government and police may have increased in 2013, when Jerad Miller had to serve a period of home confinement following a criminal incident apparently involving marijuana. “Here I am,” he wrote about the confinement, “because the previous generations of Americans were a bunch of spineless zombies.” Hopefully, he wrote, “we can achieve freedom without killing the older generations off. It may come to that.”

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June 9, 2014

Officers Down: Right-Wing Extremists Attacking Police At Growing Rate

In Las Vegas on June 8, a man and a woman entered a local pizza restaurant and shot and killed two Las Vegas Metro Police officers, Alyn Beck and Igor Soldo, who were eating lunch there. The shooters then crossed the street to a Walmart, where they killed another person, then committed suicide.officers-killed-domestic-extremists-1965-2014

Though, as of this writing, the names of the suspects have not yet been released, details of the shootings and suspects released by police or uncovered by journalists strongly suggest the shootings may be the work of right-wing extremists.

If so, the two officers who lost their lives this past Sunday are only the latest in a series of casualties in a de facto war being waged against police by right-wing extremists, including both anti-government extremists and white supremacists. Some extremists have deliberately targeted police, while others have responded violently when meeting police in unplanned encounters. The killings are not the effort of a concerted campaign but rather a series of independent attacks and clashes stemming from right-wing ideologies.

In the 1960s and 1970s it was left-wing groups like the Black Liberation Army which targeted police for killing. However, by the 1980s, right-wing extremists began to surpass left-wing extremists in causing police deaths. The number of officers killed by right-wing extremists more than doubled in the 1990s, then increased by 50% more in the first decade of the 2000s. Five officers have been killed by right-wing extremists since 2011, not counting the Las Vegas incident.

In the past five years alone, from 2009 through 2013, ADL has tracked 43 separate violent incidents between domestic extremists (of all types) and law enforcement in the United States. These incidents include situations in which shots are exchanged between police and extremists (shootouts), situations in which extremists have fired at police but police subdued the extremists without having to return fire, and situations in which officers had to use their firearms to protect themselves against extremists.

Of these 43 incidents, fully 39 of them involved extremists sporting some sort of extreme right-wing ideology. White supremacists took part in 21 incidents, while anti-government extremists were involved in 17 more. An anti-Muslim extremist was involved in one incident (the other four incidents included one with a left-wing extremist and three with domestic Islamic extremists). In these shooting incidents, the extremists shot 30 officers, 14 fatally. Many other officers sustained non-gunfire injuries during some of these encounters.shooting-incidents-2009-2013-by-ideology

Extreme ideologies cause right-wing radicals directly to attack officers. Anti-government extremist such as militia groups and sovereign citizens believe that police are agents of the illegitimate government, while white supremacists believe that police are tools of the “Jewish-controlled” government. The same ideologies sometimes cause extremists to act out violently when they randomly encounter police in routine situations.

Moreover, because right-wing extremists frequently engage in criminal activity—both ideological and non-ideological, police responding to reports of criminal activity may encounter extremists committing a crime or who are fugitives from justice. Such situations can also frequently turn deadly.

Unfortunately, relatively few officer safety courses incorporate information about the dangers to police from domestic extremists.

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February 20, 2014

Sovereign Citizen Group Forms Vigilante “Grand Juries”

Members of a growing anti-government extremist group are forming their own “grand juries” around the United States.  Some bogus “juries” have already issued demands against local government officials. sovereign-citizen-vigilante-grand-juries

The National Liberty Alliance (NLA) is a relatively new sovereign citizen group formed in 2011 as the New York Liberty Alliance by sovereign citizen guru John Darash of Poughkeepsie.  In April 2013, Darash changed the group’s name and began efforts to spread nationwide, recruiting sovereign citizens to its banner.   The sovereign citizen movement is an extreme anti-government movement whose adherents believe that they can ignore virtually all laws and regulations because the government is the product of a malevolent conspiracy.

Darash and his followers have spent most of their time creating so-called “Common Law Grand Juries” (CLGJ) in counties across the country.  According to the NLA, these bogus grand juries have the authority to conduct investigations, issue indictments, and remove officials from office.  

The sovereign citizen movement has historically created fictitious judicial or governmental entities, having formed various “citizens’ grand juries” or “people’s grand juries” in the 1980s and 1990s, as well as hundreds of “common law courts” in the 1990s.  The CLGJs are the latest variations of this long-running theme.  The NLA claims to have formed more than 100 CLGJs in the past year, although many are still basically notional.

Nevertheless, those CLGJs that have formed have already begun harassing local government officials.  In January 2014, CLGJs in Marion and St. Johns counties in Florida sent a “Writ of Mandamus” to county officials demanding a budget of $1.5 million, office space and equipment, and a meeting room with a conference table and comfortable chairs.  On February 4, the Marion County CLGJ sent a “Notice of Demand” warning county commissioners that the January demands were not optional.

In New York, Darash’s CLGJs claim to have signed a “True Bill” charging the chief court clerk in Greene County with numerous “crimes” related to her alleged failure to file CLGJ paperwork.  They have also “fined” a Greene County judge the amount of 100 ounces of silver, citing 23 separate “violations” for failing to provide documents to the CLGJ and for refusing to speak with a CLGJ “Board of Review.”  They have also purportedly sent harassing documents to a number of judges.

How the CLGJ will enforce their alleged power remains murky.  During an Internet radio interview, Darash said the NLA would contact county sheriffs about making arrests; if a sheriff refused to make an arrest, they would indict him and go to the undersheriff.  Darash concluded with a veiled threat: “Now there is another thing to do, if that doesn’t work.  I’m not ready to speak about that until we are ready to do it.  But it is an atomic bomb, it’s very strong.”

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