A Capitol rioter and member of the far-right “Three Percenters” militia group who is locked up in a Washington, D.C. jail penned a letter saying that as many as 30 of his fellow inmates who also participated in the Jan. 6 siege have formed a leaderless group, calling themselves the “1/6ers,” ProPublica reported Tuesday.
The letter, reportedly written by 48-year-old Guy Wesley Reffitt, claims that he and the other rioters currently in pre-trial detention have bonded and become close in the weeks since their arrests, doing things like reciting the Pledge of Allegiance and singing the national anthem “all in unison, loud and proud most everyday.”
Reffitt, who made headlines in January when his own family surreptitiously filmed him boasting about his alleged exploits and turned him into the FBI, did not initially put any names on the letter, which was simply signed “1/6ers.” But ProPublica said it was able to confirm its origins after several interviews with members of his family and a review of his correspondence from jail.
The outlet was also able to communicate with Reffitt via text message through his wife, Nicole Reffitt.
“Reffitt told ProPublica via his wife that more than 30 people arrested in connection with the Jan. 6 attack had discussed the letter while in custody,” the report stated. “He said that the ‘1/6ers’ are ‘not organized’ and that there are ‘no leaders,’ just ‘people chatting about things’ because they are ‘stuck here together.’”
But the letter also appeared to indicate a lack of remorse.
“We watch the people of other countries rise up against authoritarianism and think, how sad they must be to want freedom and liberty so much. Here, the more you try to divide, bend or even break America. The more The Republic of The People will stand indivisible and resolute,” the letter stated. “Did we forget ‘God Bless America’ from the mountains to the prairies, to the oceans white with foam? These battle cries meant we would and we should never shed tears because of enemies or tyranny.”
While one counterterrorism and extremism expert told ProPublica that the letter appeared to be little more than one person “puffing themselves up,” another classified it as a threat of more violence.
“I would interpret it as a threat. You can say it’s thinly veiled, but I don’t think it’s that thinly veiled,” Peter Simi, an associate professor at Chapman University, told the outlet. “This is the preamble — what you saw on the 6th. More is coming … If you thought the 6th was bad, just wait and see.”
Reffitt is currently charged with knowingly entering or remaining in any restricted building or grounds without lawful authority and obstruction of justice.
[image via charging documents]
Have a tip we should know? [email protected]