Jury Verdicts in Oath Keepers Trial Should Be Overturned Due to “Willful Perjury” by Capitol Police Officers, Says Founder
The founder of the Oath Keepers, Elmer Stewart Rhodes III, is calling for the overturning of jury verdicts that resulted in members of the group being sentenced to federal prison for up to 18 years. Rhodes claims that Capitol Police officers David Lazarus and Harry Dunn committed ”willful perjury” during the trial, and recent video evidence supports his allegations.
According to Rhodes, he and his fellow defendants were aware that Dunn and Lazarus were lying on the witness stand, but without the critical video evidence, they were unable to expose their falsehoods. However, a media outlet published the video on October 4, providing the proof they needed.
Journalist Steve Baker from Blaze Media reported on October 4 that a previously unseen Capitol security video contradicted the testimonies of Lazarus and Dunn regarding the events involving the Oath Keepers on January 6, 2021. This revelation has led Oath Keepers defense attorney Brad Geyer to call for the overturning of the guilty verdicts.
Rhodes echoed Geyer’s sentiment, stating that the video evidence proves the government’s ”planned, coached, willful perjury and subornation of perjury” during their trial. He believes that their convictions should be overturned, and they should be set free.
In May 2022, Rhodes was sentenced to 18 years in prison for seditious conspiracy, tampering with documents or proceedings, and obstruction of an official proceeding. However, he was acquitted of two other charges. Three other Oath Keepers and one associate were also found guilty of various charges related to the events of January 6.
The testimony of Lazarus was crucial in the trial, as it contradicted the accounts of Oath Keepers members and independent journalist Stephen Horn. Lazarus claimed that the Oath Keepers stood in front of Dunn as a buffer to protect him from an “angry mob.” However, the newly discovered video evidence proves otherwise.
As questions arise about the integrity of the trial, Rhodes and his defense team are demanding the release of all Capitol Police CCTV security videos from January 6. They believe that the withheld evidence and the newly revealed video footage are just the beginning of what will come to light.
Messages left with the U.S. Capitol Police and the U.S. Department of Justice regarding the testimony of Lazarus and Dunn have not been returned.
Rhodes has been highly critical of the Oath Keepers prosecution, describing it as a “Stalinistic show trial” and accusing prosecutors and government witnesses of lying to demonize the organization. He claims that the defense was hindered in presenting the true story of the Oath Keepers’ presence in Washington on January 6.
During the trial, U.S. District Judge Amit Mehta denied multiple requests to allow retired police sergeant and Oath Keepers member Michael Nichols to testify about the rescue of 16 Capitol Police officers from inside the Capitol. Nichols and fellow Oath Keeper Steve Clayton played a crucial role in ensuring the officers’ safety.
Rhodes and his defense attorneys claim that they never saw or received the video footage from prosecutors as part of the discovery process. They argue that the release of all the video footage is essential to reveal the truth.
As a result of the recent revelations, Rhodes and his defense team are demanding the immediate release of all 41,000 hours of CCTV footage from January 6. They believe that the American people should have the opportunity to see the evidence and judge for themselves.
Rhodes has also offered to testify before U.S. House committees about the Capitol Police testimony, the weaponization of the federal government, and the criminalization of patriotism and political speech. House committees have already held hearings on the Capitol Police and the weaponization of the federal government.
The recent testimony of FBI whistleblowers, who alleged heavy-handed tactics and manipulation of Jan. 6 cases, further supports Rhodes’ claims of government misconduct.
How has the Oath Keepers’ case brought into question the role and testimonies of Capitol Police officers during the events of January 6?
To remain peaceful during a pro-Trump rally on January 6, 2021. (Samuel Corum/Getty Images)
Furthermore, Rhodes has criticized the harsh sentences imposed on the Oath Keepers defendants, arguing that they are politically motivated and designed to set an example and discourage patriotic Americans from exercising their rights to assemble and protest against perceived government overreach.
This case has garnered significant attention not only due to the seriousness of the charges but also because it is seen as a test of the government’s handling of the events of January 6. Critics of the Biden administration claim that it is using the prosecution of Oath Keepers and other January 6 defendants as a way to suppress and silence dissenting voices.
Legal experts recognize that overturning verdicts is a complex process. While new evidence can sometimes be grounds for a retrial or a successful appeal, it often requires a high standard of proof and the presentation of exceptional circumstances. However, given the significance of the video evidence and the doubts regarding the integrity of the trial, the calls for the overturning of the Oath Keepers’ verdicts deserve serious consideration.
As this case unfolds, it raises important questions about the role of Capitol Police officers and the reliability of their testimonies. It also underscores the need for transparency and the complete disclosure of all evidence in highly contentious and politically charged trials.
Finally, the case highlights the ongoing debate surrounding the events of January 6 and the appropriate legal responses to them. While many agree that those who engaged in violence and destruction should be held accountable, concerns remain about the potential overreach of the government and the erosion of civil liberties in the process.
Ultimately, the request to overturn the Oath Keepers’ verdicts based on alleged “willful perjury” by Capitol Police officers adds another layer of complexity to an already controversial and divisive case. Only time will tell how the legal system responds to these claims and the extent to which they will impact the outcomes of the trial.
" Conservative News Daily does not always share or support the views and opinions expressed here; they are just those of the writer."