Gun Rights

Adam Kokesh, Anarcho-Libertarian Activist, Pleads Guilty on Weapons Charges Based on Video He Shot

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I blogged back in July on anarcho-libertarian media figure and activist Adam Kokesh being arrested and held without bond on crummy charges of carrying a shotgun in D.C.'s Freedom Plaza, an act he videoed as deliberate political provocation theater.

After rotting in jail for months, Kokesh finally pleaded guilty this week and got out pending sentencing, the Washington Post reports:

Wednesday, standing next to his new [court-appointed] attorney, Kokesh pleaded guilty to carrying a rifle or shotgun, possession of an unregistered firearm and unlawful possession of ammunition. In a separate case, Kokesh pleaded guilty to marijuana possession.

Court papers show that prosecutors offered the plea deal in a Monday letter sent to Kokesh's attorney. In the letter, Assistant U.S. Attorney Natalia Medina said prosecutors believed that Kokesh tried to sneak a cellphone into the jail Oct. 22. Medina wrote that if Kokesh accepted the plea, he would not face additional charges regarding the phone.

Kokesh's attorney, Larry Copeland, said it was the second plea deal presented to his client. Copeland said he and Kokesh "weren't concerned" about the cellphone allegation but weighed the offer.

"We evaluated the case against him and the likely outcome and made a judgment that this was the best thing to do," Copeland said.

Pending a Jan. 17 sentencing hearing, Broderick ordered Kokesh to stay out of the District and said he must report with supervising authorities weekly. The judge also ordered that Kokesh not possess any firearms. Kokesh faces a maximum of more than six years in prison on the combined charges.

It was a bad charge, though I'm not going to question a man's decisions to get himself out of a cage he's been unjustly locked into. May any eventual sentencing be light, though I wouldn't count on it.

Kokesh wrote on his Facebook page, as reported by Opposing Views.com:

"I'm incredibly grateful for everyone who supported me during my recent challenges by volunteering, donating, and writing letters to me in jail, and to the judge and the prosecutors," Kokesh posted on his Facebook. "We will continue using this as a teachable moment to illuminate the nature of government and spread the message of liberty, self-ownership and civil rights."

Reason on Kokesh.

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44 responses to “Adam Kokesh, Anarcho-Libertarian Activist, Pleads Guilty on Weapons Charges Based on Video He Shot

  1. Looks like the public pretender did his job and secured a conviction for his boss.

    1. But at least he didn’t take the first offer. Never take the first offer. Although, you probably shouldn’t take the second offer, either, but I’ve never been in federal court.

  2. If he were part of the nomenklatura, he could have used the David Gregory defense. Too bad he’s one of the masses.

    1. Why couldn’t he cite the David Gregory case as precedent?

      1. Because there was no David Gregory case, so there is no precedent to cite.

  3. Broderick ordered Kokesh to stay out of the District and said he must report with supervising authorities weekly. The judge also ordered that Kokesh not possess any firearms. Kokesh faces a maximum of more than six years in prison on the combined charges.

    Heel! [yanks on leash]

    This should remind the proles not to get too uppity.

  4. Aside from the fact that Park Service Swat people attacked his house like it was Bin Laden (with helicopter support), I find nothing sympathetic about Kokesh. He’s a dick as far as I can tell.

    1. Most likely. But then, defending freedom is defending scoundrels. The sympathetic are those that exercise their Right to keep their mouth shut, and bear with it.

    2. Wait, aren’t you kind of a dick? [ducks]

      1. Well, he does double-post.

      2. Well, he does double-post.

      3. Pretty sure everyone on here is kind of a dick.

        1. Fuck you, I resemble that remark.

        2. There are some cunts. But yeah, dicks and cunts all around.

          1. I personally prefer the cunts to the dicks, but I know many around here think they taste the same.

    3. He’s not just a dick, he’s a dick who faces prison time related to political speech. When you’re trying to institute political persecution for unapproved speech, you don’t start with likable people, you start with dicks.

      1. Yeah, but the actual quality and insight of his “political speech” is roughly equivalent to the below =

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sUHVQvFnrMs

        Call me unsurprised he’s now wearing the latest in orange-jumpsuit-fashion. His protests have done nothing to provide any support for second-amendment issues… what exactly has he accomplished besides making himself out to be a celebrity among idiots?

        1. I’m not sure, but I think they call it “civil disobedience”. I think it’s based on an essay written by some guy named Henry David Thoreau.

        2. So only speech that is of sufficient quality and/or insightful enough is protected? Nope. Even the lowest quality, least insightful speech is protected. In this case he has been persecuted because of the content of political speech. He’s a political prisoner, pure and simple.

  5. Aside from the fact that Park Service Swat people attacked his house like it was Bin Laden (with helicopter support), I find nothing sympathetic about Kokesh. He’s a dick as far as I can tell.

  6. So when the guy was pleading innocent he could not be let out of jail but once he pleads guilty he can be let out of jail?

    So having his guilt in doubt made him too dangerous to let out of jail but knowing he is a criminal then he is let out?

    Besides using jail time to force a guilty plea how does this make sense?

    1. Fuck you, that’s how.

    2. You are looking for logic in all the wrong places.

  7. Can he still appeal the conviction on Constitutional grounds?

    1. He could theoretically argue inadequate assistance of counsel and try to get the plea annulled I think, but that’s not really possible with this set of facts. Doesn’t sound like he had an incompetent lawyer, or that the lawyer failed to explain the options to Adam. In general though, no, you can’t appeal a guilty plea.

    2. Sometimes they let you plea with the right to appeal preserved. It doesn’t appear from the article that he did that though.

  8. I wonder what they threatened him with if he didn’t plead?

    1. Same thing they threaten everyone with. They tell him that if he takes it to trial the public pretender will make sure that he’s convicted of something with a harsher sentence than if he takes the plea.

      1. I know that. I was wondering more specifically.

  9. An order to stay out of the District of Columbia entirely seems questionable. Orders to stay out of particular states have pretty consistently been regarded as, at least, highly obnoxious, and I don’t see why DC is any different in this regard. Perhaps it was a term of the plea deal, though, which gives much wider discretion.

    1. I made a personal pledge to stay out of the district a year and a half ago, and have still found myself there twice. Once to visit a family member in the hospital and once because my plane was routed to DCA and I needed to take the train to BWI. If you live in the mid-Atlantic region, it can be hard to stay out of DC entirely.

  10. Hey, speaking of guns:

    FBI has two rifles stolen from their SWAT van.

    http://www.weeklystandard.com/…..66462.html

  11. Because of the whole David Gregory bullshit, this one pisses me off.

  12. One does not throw oneself in front of the juggernaut in order to stop it. Or does one?

  13. Wasn’t there another charge for mushrooms as well as marijuana?

    The weed charge was state, VA, right?

  14. If the Tank Man incident had happened in the U.S., I think the tank would probably have run over him. Being part of the government enforcement apparatus in the U.S. seems to instill a sense of petty mean-spirited despotism exemplified by that cop who pepper sprayed the passive protesters at UC Davis. Luckily, that kind of behavior has been actively discouraged by subjecting him to eight months of paid vacation and then forcing him to accept $38,000.

    1. Depends on who was driving the tank. A cop no doubt would have run the guy over, but I doubt a soldier would intentionally run over a civilian.

      1. Maybe. Soldiers are known to be quite capable of committing civilian atrocities, so I wouldn’t be too quick to put them too far above cops.

        Still, I agree with you that a soldier would probably have to think about it first, given that they aren’t steeped in a culture that routinely engages in abuses of power toward ordinary citizens.

      2. but I doubt a soldier would intentionally run over a civilian.

        The Bonus Army would have liked to agree with you. Seems relevant:

        At 4:45 p.m., commanded by Gen. Douglas MacArthur, the 12th Infantry Regiment, Fort Howard, Maryland, and the 3rd Cavalry Regiment, supported by six battle tanks commanded by Maj. George S. Patton, formed in Pennsylvania Avenue while thousands of civil service employees left work to line the street and watch. The Bonus Marchers, believing the troops were marching in their honor, cheered the troops until Patton ordered the cavalry to charge them?an action which prompted the spectators to yell, “Shame! Shame!”

        After the cavalry charged, the infantry, with fixed bayonets and tear gas entered the camps, evicting veterans, families, and camp followers. The veterans fled across the Anacostia River to their largest camp and President Hoover ordered the assault stopped. However Gen. MacArthur, feeling the Bonus March was an attempt to overthrow the U.S. government, ignored the President and ordered a new attack. Fifty-five veterans were injured and 135 arrested. A veteran’s wife miscarried. When 12-week-old Bernard Myers died in the hospital after being caught in the tear gas attack, a government investigation reported he died of enteritis, while a hospital spokesman said the tear gas “didn’t do it any good.”

        They’ll run him over.

    2. a sense of petty mean-spirited despotism exemplified by that cop who pepper sprayed the passive protesters at UC Davis.

      Those protestors were imprisoning the cops!
      /Tulpafy

  15. DC AG gave the following reason for not prosecuting Gregory:
    “Influencing our judgment in this case, among other things, is our recognition that the intent of the temporary possession and short display of the magazine was to promote the First Amendment purpose of informing an ongoing public debate about firearms policy in the United States, especially while this subject was foremost in the minds of the public following the previously mentioned events in Connecticut and the President’s speech to the nation about them.”

    How is this case any different, other than the fact that Kokesh was expressed the opposite viewpoint? Like Gregory, he didn’t use the weapon and didn’t threaten to use it.

    1. Because the government agrees with Gregory, but they disagree with Kokesh. Duh!

      1. Yep. It’s not what someone does, but who they are that matters.

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