Newly Released Capitol Riot Video Shows Iced Earth’s Jon Schaffer Fighting Police Officers
Newly released security camera footage from last month’s seditious riot at the Capitol seems to show Iced Earth’s Jon Schaffer engaging in a physical fight with police officers attempting to protect the building.
You can watch the footage (via CNN) below. Schaffer clearly appears around the 1:16 mark, adorned in the same blue hoodie he was seen wearing in this widely circulated photo from the riot.
Both the Washington, D.C. police and the FBI were looking for Schaffer after the aforementioned widely circulated photo identified him as one of the participants in the January 6 pro-Trump assault on the Capitol. After eleven days, the guitarist finally turned himself in to authorities on Sunday, January 17.
As of Friday, January 29, Schaffer was being held in Marion County Jail in Indianapolis, IN, awaiting extradition to Washington, D.C.
Following his arrest, The New York Times reported that authorities believed Schaffer to be a member of the Oath Keepers, an organized, far-right militia group known as the Oath Keepers who planned the invasion of the building in advance, and can be seen wearing an Oath Keepers hat in photos from the insurrection. Days later, however, the Indiana chapter of the Oath Keepers released a statement in which they asserted that Schaffer is not a member of their organization.
After Schaffer turned himself in, the FBI Indianapolis Field Office indicated he faces 6 charges, including spraying Capitol police with ‘bear spray.’
Schaffer was also charged with “unlawful entry into restricted buildings or grounds,” which carries a maximum penalty of one year in prison that could rise to a maximum of 10 years if injuries or weapons were involved.
The full list of charges is as follows:
- “Knowingly Entering or Remaining in any Restricted Building or Grounds Without Lawful Authority”
- “Disrupting the Orderly Conduct of Government Business”
- “Knowingly Engages in an Act of Physical Violence Against any Person or Property in any Restricted Building or Grounds”
- “Violent Entry and Disorderly Conduct in a Capitol Building”
- “Engage in an Act of Physical Violence in a Capitol Building”
- “Parade, Demonstrate, or Picket in a Capitol Building”
Yesterday, vocalist Stu Block (ex-Into Eternity), bassist Luke Appleton, and guitarist Jake Dreyer (Witherfall) all announced their departure from Iced Earth. Vocalist Hansi Kürsch (Blind Guardian) quit Schaffer’s other project, Demons & Wizards, earlier this month. Both of those bands no longer appear on the current or former artist pages of Schaffer’s longtime label, Century Media. The label has yet to issue a formal statement as to whether or not they’ve dropped the two acts.
A number of folks who donated to the Kickstarter campaign for an upcoming Iced Earth book publicly renounced their fandom and demanded refunds, posting angry comments on the book’s crowdfunding page. Others, however, continue to support Schaffer.
The guitarist has been quite open about his far-right political views for years, openly discussing his mistrust of government (with a special emphasis on the federal reserve), asserting his belief that Trump’s loss in the popular vote in the 2016 presidential election was tipped by illegal immigrants, speaking out in favor of arming teachers to prevent school shootings, and claiming that COVID-19 is a hoax.
[via The PRP]