9 pro-Trump militia members charged for conspiring to storm Capitol

James Marshall
February 20, 2021

To date, federal charges have been filed in more than 200 cases involving the attack by a mob of supporters of former President Donald Trump, including many with ties to far right groups like the Oath Keepers.

Last month, the Justice Department charged three members of the Oath Keepers with conspiring to undermine President Biden's win.

In a superseding indictment on Friday, the United States charged six people allegedly connected to Oath Keepers - Ohio residents Sandra Ruth Parker, 60, and her husband Bennie Alvin Parker, 70, Graydon Young, 54, of Florida, Kelly Meggs, 52, and his 59-year-old wife Connie Meggs, also of Florida, and Laura Steele, 52, of North Carolina.

In a superseding indictment, the U.S. has charged six people allegedly connected to far-right fringe group Oath Keepers for conspiring to storm the Capitol.

Caldwell and Watkins have pleaded not guilty. It's gonna be wild!

"We are retired so we can meet anytime", Parker allegedly told Watkins in late December, referring, the feds say, to becoming a member of the Oath Keepers.

The Justice Department charged six more people Friday it says are members of a right-wing militia group that plotted in advance of January 6 to attack the U.S. Capitol. "Sir Yes Sir! Gentleman we are heading to DC". Several members of the Proud Boys, a far-right, male-chauvinist extremist group that seized on the Trump administration's policies, have also been charged with conspiracy and accused of working together during the siege.

Sandra and Bennie Parker appeared in a federal court in OH on Thursday and were released on bond pending their next appearance in a federal court in Washington, DC An attorney for Sandra Parker declined comment. A lawyer representing Bennie Parker did not immediately respond to several phone calls and emails seeking comment.

The remaining defendants are due to appear in federal courts in Florida and North Carolina next week.

The Parkers, as well as Graydon Young, Laura Steele, Kelly Megs and Connie Meggs, now face a conspiracy charge, as well as counts for aiding and abetting the depredation of government property, obstructing an official proceeding, and entering a restricted building or grounds.

On Jan. 9, Watkins told Bennie Parker by text she thought the Federal Bureau of Investigation was only interested in people "who destroyed things", according to the complaint.

In a message to Bennie Parker in the days following the attack on the Capitol, Watkins wrote: "I've been following the FBI's wanted list".

Watkins, who allegedly recruited people to travel to D.C. on January 6, had Bennie Parker in her phone as "Recruit Ben", the affidavit said, and Watkins' alleged text messages with Parker showed them planning for the Washington event.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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