Three more alleged neo-Nazis connected to a white-nationalist group planning to have members at a Monday gun-rights rally in Virginia are reported to have been arrested. The three Georgia men, who are suspected of participating in a criminal street gang associated with a hate group known as The Base, were arrested on several charges, including conspiracy to commit murder, the Rome News-Tribune reports. The three men are Luke Austin, Michael Helterbrand, and Jacob Kaderli of Dacula, the paper reports. Authorities allege the men wanted to kill a married couple in Georgia who are “high-ranking” members of the far-left Antifa movement. The slaying was meant to be retaliation for exposing white supremacists online, the Washington Post reported.
The trio’s arrest came a day before three other suspected members of The Base were picked up in Maryland on a variety of gun charges, including possession of a home-made machine gun. Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam has declared a four-day state of emergency ahead of the Jan. 20 rally to protest new gun-control legislation. The move has allowed the state to ban all weapons, including firearms, in the area around the Capitol in Richmond.
Susan Bro, the mother of Heather Heyer, who was killed by a white nationalist at a rally that turned violent in nearby Charlottesville in 2017, begged attendees on all sides of the Second Amendment event to stay peaceful. In an interview with Britain’s Independent on Friday, Bro said she was worried about incitements to violence ahead of the Monday rally and said: “To anybody planning violence: stay the hell away from Richmond.” She added, “I just think everyone needs to take a moment and breathe, but I think we’re past that point.”