“We humans can’t WAIT to spray the trees of freedom with your blood,” Bies reportedly wrote in an August 10 message. “I’m waiting for you to kick in my door.”
Bies was arrested late Friday, according to a press release from the Ministry of Justice. He is charged with threatening to assault or murder a federal law enforcement officer. Bies appeared in U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania Monday afternoon, and a federal judge held a hearing Thursday to determine whether he should remain incarcerated while the case against him continues.
Court files do not mention a lawyer for Bies. The federal prosecutor assigned to his case did not immediately return a request for comment from The Washington Post early Tuesday.
After Mar-a-Lago search, Fox News, Trump supporters denounce ‘abuse of power’
Bies’ arrest came days after FBI agents searched the Mar-a-Lago Club on Aug. 8, sparking a firestorm among conservative politicians and commentators. As Trump supporters protested outside the resort that evening, Fox News host Sean Hannity distilled much of their criticism and denounced the search as “a dark day for our republic, the Justice Department, the rule of law,” The Post reported.
Hannity warned his viewers that they could be next.
‘Make no mistake,’ said the host, ‘if you are somehow associated with Donald Trump, you better cross all your i’s and dot the i’s because they are coming for you with full force of the federal government. ”
Stephen K. Bannon, a conservative podcaster and former Trump adviser, was more blunt, calling the FBI “the Gestapo.”
“We’re at war,” he said.
FBI Attacker Made Many Contributions to Trump’s Truth Social Website
Such rhetoric led FBI Director Christopher A. Wray, who was appointed by Trump in 2017, to denounce online threats against federal agents and the Justice Department as “deplorable and dangerous,” the Associated Press reported.
“I’m always concerned about threats to law enforcement,” Wray said. “Violence against law enforcement is not the answer, no matter who you are angry at.”
A day later, Ricky Shiffer, a 42-year veteran of the Iraq War, reportedly attempted to breach an FBI field office in Cincinnati and engaged in an hour-long standoff with law enforcement that ended when he was killed in a gunfight. Shiffer had drawn the FBI’s attention to possible extremist behavior in the months before, but the intelligence gathered by agents “contained no specific and credible threat,” The Post reported.
An account in Shiffer’s name on Truth Social, Trump’s social media site, posted 374 messages in the eight days before the attack on the FBI office, many of which mimic Trump’s false claims about voter fraud, according to The Post. After FBI agents searched the Mar-a-Lago Club, Shiffer’s reports called for all-out war, urging people to “grab what you need to get ready for battle.”
“Be ready to kill the enemy,” Shiffer is said to have posted two days before the standoff. “Kill [the FBI] insight.”
Ministry of Justice opposes release of Mar-a-Lago . affidavit
A day after Shiffer was killed, the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security released a joint intelligence announcement to their employees warning of “violent threats” against federal law enforcement, other government employees and official facilities, The Post reported.
In the memo, DOJ officials said their online surveillance found many people calling for “civil war” and “armed rebellion.”
On Monday, Fox News host Steve Doocy pleaded with Trump to urge his supporters to suppress the rhetoric.
“With all these threats circulating, eventually it would be great if the former president, who has always been a big supporter of law enforcement… especially the FBI,” Doocy said on Fox & Friends.
Like Shiffer, Bies is said to have posted anti-FBI screeds in the days following the Mar-a-Lago search. Bies repeatedly threatened FBI employees — taunting them, calling them “bastards” who “deserve a painful death,” the FBI agent wrote in the affidavit. On Aug. 10, Bies reportedly said that anyone “who works for the FBI in any capacity, from the director to the janitor who cleans their … toilets, deserves to die.”
“You have declared war on us and now it is open season for YOU,” Bies wrote in the post, according to the affidavit.
The FBI agent investigating Bies’ alleged threats said he was trying to evade law enforcement by using a false name online. In fact, Bies said the same thing in chat logs that Gab forked to the FBI, explaining that he used an alias “so corporate Murica’ can’t google me for a job.”
The Gab records also included an IP address, which led the FBI to Bies’ home in Mercer, Pennsylvania.
In one of the posts that caught the attention of the FBI, Bies reportedly wrote that he had accepted what he believed to be an “inevitable outcome” — he would die at the hands of the FBI.
“My only goal is to kill more of them before I drop,” he said, according to the affidavit. “I will not spend a second of my life in their custody.”
Early Tuesday, he was incarcerated in a prison about 20 miles north of Pittsburgh.