The 31 men with ties to a national hate group were due to appear in court for the first time on Monday, but as all have pledged themselves it is not clear if anyone will appear.
COEUR D’ALENE, Idaho — Coeur d’Alene police and the city’s mayor will report Monday morning on the arrest of 31 men with ties to the white nationalist hate group Patriot Front.
The men were arrested Saturday afternoon, blocks away from the Pride at the Park event. Police found the 31 men hiding in a U-Haul truck after someone spotted them loading and called to report what “looked like a small army”.
Police said they found evidence the group was planning a riot in downtown Coeur d’Alene. All 31 men were arrested on charges of conspiring to riot.
Coeur d’Alene Police Chief Lee White and Mayor Jim Hammond will provide an update on the arrests at 11:00 a.m. Pacific Time Monday. You can watch the press conference live on KREM.com, the KREM 2 YouTube page and streaming on KREM2+.
On Sunday, the Kootenai County Sheriff’s Office released the identities of the arrested men. Among them is Thomas Rousseau, who was reported by several national news outlets as the founder of the Patriot Front.
RELATED: Names of 31 arrested for conspiracy to riot in Coeur d’Alene
Court dates for each of the 31 men were set for Monday afternoon, but as they all joined forces over the weekend it is not clear if any of them will appear for the first time.
Those arrested are from 12 states, including Idaho, Washington, Oregon, Texas, Michigan, Alabama, Colorado, Wyoming, Utah, South Dakota, Illinois and Arkansas.
31 men arrested in the back of a U-Haul truck in Coeur d’Alene on charges of conspiracy to riot
Evidence police gathered from the U-Haul included shields, riot gear, at least one smoke grenade and details of the group’s plan to stage a riot.
The New York Times reports that the group’s leader had a seven-page document outlining their plan. The Times reports that it included details on how smoke would be used: “a column that forms on the outside of the park and advances inward until obstacles to the approach are met” and “once adequate confrontational dynamics have been established, the column will disengage and head for Sherman.”
Watch the moment police opened the U-Haul and found dozens of men hiding inside
According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, the Patriot Front is a white nationalist hate group that split from Vanguard America after the deadly 2017 “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville, Virginia. During this event, a young counter-protester, Heather Heyer, was killed when a member of the neo-Nazi group drove his car into the crowd.
https://www.king5.com/article/news/local/coeur-dalene-police-arrest-31-men-national-hate-group/293-f8a20964-8d04-41bb-aad6-87b5203be205 Update today on arrest of 31 men with ties to national hate group