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Video appears to show activist loading shotgun in Freedom Plaza
An activist who planned, and then canceled, an armed march into the District on July Fourth posted online what appeared to be a video of himself loading a shotgun in Freedom Plaza.
Adam Kokesh can be seen in the 22-second YouTube video in a suit jacket and an open collar loading four shells into a shotgun and pumping a shell into the chamber.
The video is stamped with the date July 4, 2013.
As he loads the shotgun, Mr. Kokesh recites the closing lines of his Final American Revolution Pledge of Resistance, which was posted on his website Wednesday.
“We will not be silent. We will not obey. We will not allow our government to destroy our humanity. We are the final American revolution,” he said, before closing with, “See you next Independence Day.”
D.C. police on Thursday issued a statement about the video.
“The Metropolitan Police Department and US Park Police are aware that today Adam Kokesh posted a video that appears to have been taken in Freedom Plaza in Northwest, DC,” the statement says. “We are in the process of determining the authenticity of the video.”
The video comes after Mr. Kokesh, an Internet talk show host, in May proposed an armed march that would start at Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia and proceed across the Arlington Memorial Bridge into the District — where it is illegal to carry guns on the street.
The idea immediately met resistance from city officials.
“If you’re coming here to break the law, then we’re going to take action,” D.C. Police Chief Cathy L. Lanier said. “There is a pretty good chance we’ll meet them on the D.C. side of the bridge.”
Within days, thousands of people had said via Facebook that they planned to attend the march.
About three weeks later, Mr. Kokesh backed off, urging supporters not to come to the District and instead urging them to march in the 50 state capitals in favor of dissolving the federal government.
Since the Supreme Court struck down the District’s 30-year near-total ban on handgun ownership in 2008, D.C. residents have been able to purchase handguns and keep them in their homes but are precluded from carrying them on the street.
A person caught carrying a gun outside of their own home or place of business can face up to five years in prison and a $5,000 fine, according to D.C. law.
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About the Author
Andrea Noble is a crime and public safety reporter for The Washington Times. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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