“I felt like I was acting like a rebel, someone against my own government,” he said in the trial of Rhodes and four others in federal court in Washington.
The testimony on Monday of Young, 57, of the Tampa area, was crucial to the prosecution. He was one of three wanted witnesses who confessed to at least one of the three conspiracies in which Rhodes and others were charged. Oath Keepers co-defenders are accused of being in military-style gear in “groups” formed outside the Capitol and with guns outside Washington.
Prosecutors must show that although Rhodes did not enter the building that day, he and the defendants participated in the protest by forcing the change of the president’s power, influence Congress as it meets to confirm the 2020 election, or influence legislators.
What you need to know about the Oath Keepers trial
Young said he believed there was a misunderstanding among Oath Keepers who were involved in communications with Rhodes that he called to challenge President Biden from the job, though Young said there was no specific to enter the Capitol on January 6 or agree to commit a crime.
“There is no specific plan you have known about to breach the doors of the Capitol, is there?” Rhodes’ attorney James Lee Bright asked during cross-examination.
“Yes,” Young replied.
But Young told attorney Jeffrey S. Nestler, “I joined a conspiracy to influence Congress. … We’re going to influence Congress, wherever they meet.”
“I feel like it’s a feeling,” he said. “We talked about doing something about the fraud in the election when we got to the 6th, and when the crowd crossed the barricades, the time presented itself to be a monster nothing.”
Young, a retired civilian and Navy Reserves information officer, told reporters how after the 2020 election he was bored by him and his wife. rental property and babysitting businesses and spent “two to six” a day after President Donald Trump’s false claims of massive voter fraud.
Young said he believed further protests would be “futile,” noting that Congress’ joint Jan. 6 meeting was “the last straw” before Biden’s two-week summit. behind, and joined the Oath Keepers because “I felt like something had to be changed or done. done.”
“I got really emotional in what happened. It started to influence my decisions and change my priorities” away from his family, Young said.
Young signed on to be a bodyguard for Trump’s political adviser Roger Stone in Florida, where he met a military trainer. Young, who has 10 guns including two AR-15 assault rifles, said he searched for weapons using simulated rounds for his security team, and told Rhodes and his attorney. Florida Oath Keepers January 6 leader Kelly Meggs, who both. told the Oath Keepers action in Washington that day, Young testified.
On the face of it, Young said he remembered Trump’s attorney Sidney Powell saying that the voting machines had been tampered with and the U.S. government have been in trouble; he believes that it is time to stand up against the corrupt government “to make us accept wrong elections and so on.”
The youth testified that Meggs told other members in Florida in a press conference in December 2020 that the Oath Keepers were ready to become a potential leader of “millions” at once the struggle began. While Young fretted that opposing the federal government was a “fool’s errand,” and that he and others did not believe they could stop the vote, Rhodes was ready to join in the negotiations to “motivate” them – “like the CEO shows in your interview.”
Rhodes said in the news on Christmas Day, only after another participant said, “We will be the leader of 1776.2.”
Congress needs to be scared and convinced that “it will be lights and pitchforks time i[f] they’re not doing the right thing,” Rhodes said, adding that if Trump doesn’t do it by calling out the military and the private military to stay in power, the Oath Keepers will.
Young said he was under the impression that the Oath Keeper’s campaign would be against “the enemy” including Congress, Biden and the leaders of the federal agencies: “I’m not sure that we what to do. [Oath Keepers] will do or when … – even if the public should not oppose the fraud, and then we will step in to help them, or we will get them to do something – but I think it means after Biden has confirmed that there will be a vaccine and protection. “
Young said he didn’t bring a gun to Washington because he traveled by air, and Meggs said he would bring a gun to him. However Young said he and his sister, a former police officer in North Carolina, brought several guns with them to the D.C. area.
In Washington that day, Meggs ordered a group of Oath Keepers to go to the Capitol to negotiate with Rhodes after hearing that the police had committed a crime and had communicated with Rhodes, Young testified.
Ex-Oath Keeper reveals the dark world behind the US Capitol attack
While there, Young said he put his hand on the shoulder of attorney Kenneth Harrelson, another member of the Florida Oath Keepers and a lawyer. Young said the couple spent about 30 minutes in the Capitol after he “charged” his way into the building and joined a group of people who tried to push past officials against the Senate chamber. before being removed by chemicals.
The youth pleaded guilty in June 2021 to conspiracy and obstructing the work of Congress. He testified after prosecutors asked to drop four additional counts and cut back on a recommended 63-to-78-month prison term in the deal for his “participation a lot.”
The teenager’s testimony, coming into the fifth week of the trial and after proceedings were interrupted last week by Rhodes’ diagnosis of the coronavirus, could be the basis for whether were prosecutors able to distinguish Rhodes and his co-defendants’ actions from nearly 300 other suspects. of attempting or conspiring to influence Congress, but not using force to attack the government.
Two weeks ago, a second accomplice, Jason Dolan, 46, of Wellington, Fla., testified that members of the group planned to stop Congress from confirming the election. in 2020 “by all means necessary,” including fighting, and was attacked. with possible death “treasonous” death.
It “would be a rebellion against what I see as an illegitimate form of government,” Dolan explained. Like Young, Dolan testified that Rhodes declared that the Oath Keepers would act even if Trump did not: “We will prevent the certification of the election … by any means necessary. That’s why we took our guns.”
But Dolan also testified that he knew that there was no order or “special mission” to enter the building and that it was a “commander’s objective” or a general purpose to get Trump to work.