Jury deliberations are expected to begin this week in the trial of Stewart Rhodes, the founder of the extremist group The Oath Keepers, and four other group members. They’re facing seditious conspiracy and other charges in the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol. Experts say this case is the most significant DOJ prosecution in the entire tranche of Capitol Breach Cases.
If you would like more context on this matter, please consider Jon Lewis, a research fellow at the Program on Extremism at the George Washington University. He studies domestic violent extremism and homegrown violent extremism, with a specialization in the evolution of white supremacist and anti-government movements in the United States and federal responses to the threat.
Lewis can speak to the future implications of this case, including what the prosecution of Rhodes and his key lieutenants could mean for the Oath Keepers as an organization, and more importantly, and what the future holds for the anti-government/patriot-militia space and the domestic violent extremist landscape as a whole.
“The life or death of the Oath Keepers as an entity does little to stem the rising tide of an increasingly mainstreamed threat,” Lewis says. “Movements, narratives, and grievances have become far more central to the radicalization and mobilization of violent extremists than formal, organized groups.”
Lewis has been following the trial from the beginning. He can also discuss the evidence in trial, the seditious conspiracy charge, the arguments from the prosecution and defense, and other big picture elements related to the trial.
If you would like to speak to Jon Lewis, please contact GW Media Relations Specialist Cate Douglass at [email protected].