Another Capitol Riot Suspect Does FBI’s Job for Them, Was Arrested Wearing a Shirt Reading “I Was There”
Following the Capitol riot on January 6, a lot of participants made it as easy as possible for the FBI to track them down by doing things like geotagging themselves at the riot or posting pictures and videos of themselves on social media with captions like “On my way to do crimes at the Capitol #MAGA #HelloFBI #PleaseArrestMe.”
I don’t know if anyone has made identifying them easier than Garret Miller, who is one of those people who felt the need to show off online. He reportedly posted a picture to Twitter showing rioters in the Rotunda, waving Trump flags, with the caption “From inside Congress.” According to the Washington Post, in the following days, he also posted pictures of crowds outside the Capitol building.
He also reportedly posted a selfie from inside the Capitol, captioned, “Just wanted to incriminate myself a little lol.”
That’s not all. When police showed up to arrest him—and I sincerely wish this were a joke but it is not—Miller was wearing a shirt that literally read “I Was There, Washington D.C., January 6, 2021,” with a picture of Donald Trump’s face on it.
I’m guessing that doesn’t count as an official confession, but it has to be close.
It’s truly amazing that so many of these people genuinely don’t seem to realize that posting pictures about participating in a violent insurrection that left multiple people dead is a big deal. I don’t know if it’s social media brain poisoning (why do it if you can’t post it online?!) or if they really don’t understand that it wasn’t some fun LARPing experience, or if they just think they’re above the law. Based on what we’ve seen from participants who have been arrested so far, it seems to be a mix of all of the above, to different degrees for different people.
Miller definitely appears to have understood the gravity of the events of January 6. In the days leading up to the riot, he posted online about potential violence. “Some crazy s— going to happen this week,” he wrote on Facebook. “Dollar might collapse … civil war could start … not sure what to do in DC.”
He also wrote that he was planning to bring “a grappling hook and rope and a level 3 vest. Helmets mouth guard and bump cap.”
In the hours after the riot, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez tweeted “Impeach.” Miller tweeted in response: “Assassinate AOC.”
Maybe most troubling is the obsession Miller seemed to have with the Capitol police officer who shot a female protester during the riot. According to prosecutors, Miller believed the officer to be Black (as far as I can tell, he has not been identified publicly) and saw him as “a prize to be taken.”
“He will swing. I had a rope in my bag that day,” Miller reportedly posted to Instagram on January 10. In other posts, according to court documents, Miller wrote that he wanted to “hug his neck with a nice rope,” and that “its huntin season” and that the officer “deserve[s] to die.” Prosecutors say he also admitted to having a gun with him inside the Capitol.
A lot of rioters have argued that they just got caught up in the momentum of the mob but never planned to be violent. That argument isn’t a great defense (seeing as they were part of a violent insurrection, after all) but it’s got to be more convincing than whatever Miller ends up going with.
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