WASHINGTON A pro-Trump social media influencer who was found guilty of disorderly and disruptive behavior on the grounds of the Capitol for his actions on January 6 is upset that court documents that were supposed to be sealed this week were made public and show the help he gave to federal investigators looking into the siege.
The #WalkAway movement was started by self-described former liberal Brandon Straka, who was sentenced to three months of home detention and three years of probation in January. His “substantial” cooperation with the FBI investigation into the attack on January 6 was one of the reasons for his relatively short sentence, according to his lawyer described.
Prior to his punishment, documents outlining his cooperation were submitted under seal; however, last week, NBC News joined a coalition of media outlets to file a motion asking for the documents to be made public.
Judge Dabney L. Friedrich authorized the immediate unsealing of some documents earlier this week but requested further filings from the parties to determine if the underlying attachments, which contain information about Straka’s assistance, should also be unsealed.
However, it appears that the documents given to the media coalition had the underlying attachments that were supposed to be temporarily kept under seal. The motion for a hearing on the distribution of the documents without court clearance was submitted by Straka’s counsel early on Friday.
Straka submitted a two-page message on the right-leaning social media site GETTR in response to what he called a “leak” when news of his cooperation started to circulate on social media and a report about it ran on WUSA-9.
The disclosed records state that part of the information he sent to the FBI was negative in nature and might be used to support criminal accusations. The majority of the persons he spoke to the FBI about were his friends, and he said that he didn’t mention anything unfavorable about them in his GETTR article, which disregarded that.
According to Straka, there is NOTHING WRONG about alerting the DOJ that your pals are innocent in a conversation. I sincerely hope that at some point, people will start to see the tragedy that the DOJ’s leak to the liberal media of secret court documents actually is.
The “Stop the Steal” organizers Ali Alexander, Amy Kremer, Kylie Kremer, and Cindy Chafian are among those listed in the disclosed court records.
Simone Gold, an opponent of vaccinations who Straka specifically referred to be a friend in his GETTR article, was also included on the list.
“Simone Gold, who is now a friend of mine, was on the list, and she was detained and prosecuted PRIOR to me. We didn’t really know one another on January 6th, he wrote.
However, prosecutors claim that Straka is actually exaggerating how helpful he was in their case against the lady he now considers a friend. In its own memo, the Department of Justice stated that Straka handed federal investigators crucial information in the case because he gave them voicemails from Gold that were crucial to the government’s prosecution. In June, Gold received a term of two months in federal prison.
The government claims Straka also gave “useful” details about a man who was nearby the Capitol with him but “had not been previously recognized by the FBI prior to Straka’s identification.” Although Straka’s defense document stated that it was “unknown whether this individual actually did enter the Capitol,” Straka gave the information on the man, who his defense described as a Nevada-based convicted sex offender.
It’s not the first time Straka has tried to hide the evidence in his case.
Although he stated that he said “take it, take it” as rioters sought to steal a Capitol Police officer’s shield in a signed court document as part of his plea, he has subsequently attempted to downplay the behavior and clearly hinted that he was lying when he signed the plea deal.
Following the conclusion of his home detention, Straka said said in a YouTube interview last month, “I’m being accused of saying ‘Take the shield, take the shield,’ which I can’t dispute. It was a requirement in the statement of offense that I essentially admit to everything I had initially charged myself of. I told my lawyer that I couldn’t sign this. I had the choice to accept the agreement as stated or proceed to trial.
As he stated during his sentencing hearing, the confessed facts would be detrimental to his career. “My fans do not support violence, and they all stand up to support the blue,” he added. My supporters would never put up with me supporting violence.
Given his extensive social media posts about January 6, Friedrich, a 2017 Trump appointee, stated during the sentencing hearing that it was very difficult to accept what Mr. Straka wants me to believe and that his claim that he was completely unaware of the violence at the Capitol before he headed down to the building didn’t ring true.
What does “Patriots” signify to him? HOLD. THIS LINE? In reference to a tweet that Straka published on January 6 at 5:33 pm, the judge queried his attorney.
According to Straka’s GETTR post, the liberal media were the recipients of leaked confidential court documents from the DOJ.
For a year and a half, the DOJ has caused me much suffering, he claimed. “I didn’t hide out, crawl in a hole, and die after my case as they wanted me to, so that’s why these documents were leaked. I’m not going to right away.
When the FBI’s special agents questioned Straka back in January, the defendant, President Donald J. Trump, and supporters of the previous administration were allegedly planning to interrupt the Joint Session of Congress on January 6. This was according to the defendant’s attorney, who said in revealed. He claimed that Straka rejected the idea of any such plot.
(July 29, 2022, 2:25 PM ET) CORRECTION The last names of two Stop the Steal organizers were spelled incorrectly in a previous version of this story based on errors made by both the government and the defense in court records. They are not Kremmer; they are Amy Kremer and Kylie Kremer.