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As shock waves reverberate, fears of violence at home

SoVaNow.com / January 11, 2021
After seeing the U.S. Capitol building ransacked by a pro-Trump mob and five persons die in the riot, Halifax County residents, like Americans everywhere, are feeling the shock waves — and in some cases, wondering if the violence in Washington, D.C., has run its course.

They are wondering, too, if violence could surface closer to home.

The failed insurrection to stop Congressional certification of President-elect Joe Biden’s victory in the 2020 race drew the condemnation of Halifax County Republican Unit Chair Jimmy Wade, who said he is “very disappointed” with Republicans and Trump voters who took part in the mob.

The breach of the U.S. Capitol, vandalism and bloodshed, “obviously there was no place for that type of behavior, and we try not to be that way,” said Wade.

“From what I could see [on television] enough of them were Trump supporters, and I’m sure some of them were. I would like to think they were not [Republicans], but when you get a hot-headed person fed up with politics, this is a potential outcome,” said Wade, stressing his dismay with those who took part.

The invasion of the Capitol by far-right perpetrators has set off an earthquake in American society — underscored by unprecedented moves by Facebook, Twitter and Google to ban Trump and right-wing provocateurs from continuing to post on their social media platforms. At the Capitol, Congressional Democrats are moving forward with impeachment proceedings against Trump on charges of inciting the rioters, and several Senate Republicans have indicated they want Trump to resign before his presidency ends Jan. 20.

While Congress mulls incitements by Trump, social media posters in Halifax have raised alarms about Facebook messages by Mitzi Thompson, commander of the self-styled Halifax County Militia. In one such message, shared among members of the militia Facebook friends group, Thompson reposted a message from a QAnon group from the summer, seeming to call for the imposition of martial law in the U.S.

“Get ready. Its [sic] happening,” wrote Thompson of the message, addressed to “EAM LOYALISTS,” an apparent reference to a military term for “Emergency Action Message.” The message, and other comments on the board, appear to spell out actions leading up to martial law, including the “[m]ovement of [military] assets … to central locations under guise of citizen riot control.”

Thompson, whose militia group sought the formal backing of the Halifax County Board of Supervisors before supervisors ultimately rejected the idea, posted other messages in recent days saying “Big Chess Moves In Play” and “Alert: Condition Red.” In one such post, she wrote, “‘Halifax Militia you are placed in Stage 2 Alert.”

Reached for comment to explain the intent of the messages, she said the communiques are to prepare militia members for potential emergencies which are unconnected to developments at the Capitol.

Stage 2, said Thompson, “refers to having your house in order and stocked with provisions” in case of social disruption. If communications signals are blocked, and there is no way to contact anyone, “Stage 3 is the place we will all meet to make sure we are OK and to share any news or if anyone needs assistance,” she added.

Thompson pointed to one rumor — of a communications disruption being caused by solar flares — in contending the militia orders have nothing to do with a possible outbreak of violence.

“I support the rule of law and order. I am not a radical-minded person, and I try to be mature. I do not condone any type of violence and if someone wants to act that way, they are out of the [Halifax militia] group,” said Thompson.

QAnon — which peddles the conspiracy theory that Democrats including Biden are behind pedophilia rings and are plotting against America — figured prominently at the Capitol riot on Wednesday. An apparent ringleader of the insurrection, an Arizona Republican activist who goes by the name Q Shaman, entered congressional chambers wearing bearskins and horns to become one of the most recognizable figures of the uprising. He has been arrested.

Thompson said no one in the Halifax County Militia took part in the protests in Washington that turned violent Wednesday afternoon. “I told my guys to stay home; there is no telling what could happen in a group of three million,” said Thompson.

“I had a feeling something might happen, and my friends in Virginia that attended the Trump rally left immediately and started back-pedaling as soon as things got out of hand,” she added.

Others people in Halifax County who have posted on social media are unconvinced. Some have written that they reported the local militia messages to law enforcement.

Reached for comment, Sheriff Fred Clark responded via text message that “We have only had a couple people that wanted to make sure we were aware of the post that was made by the militia. And yes we try to monitor social media best [that] we can for anything unusual or any types of threats.”

Halifax County Commonwealth’s Attorney Tracy Martin said she has not received indications of an elevated risk of political violence in Halifax County in the aftermath of the assault on the Capitol. “I don’t get memos from the FBI alerting me to anything,” she said. “I would expect if there were an emergency coming our way, they would alert all law enforcement, and I’m not aware of any such alert.

“No one needs to assume a crime is occurring or is widespread with regards to insurrection activities. Everybody needs to stay calm.”

Martin said Virginia law bans paramilitary activities that are intended to foment civil disorder, but she said such actions are “really different from speech.

“Words are not the same as actions. We live in a society that prosecutes the crime that has occurred, and if a crime occurs I would expect that to be investigated by law enforcement.”

Acknowledging the heightened tensions that have resulted from events in Washington, Martin said she has gone back in recent days to the advice of her father: “When my daddy taught me about being street smart, he’d tell me people don’t need to be afraid, they need to be aware.

“I think everyone needs to take a deep breath and move forward with confidence in our future,” she added.

Wade, the county GOP chair, said he is urging party faithful in the area to dissociate with political radicals who cheered on Wednesday’s insurrection attempt.

“We are not going to side with the militia; not knowing the intentions of other groups could get us [Republicans] into more trouble,” said Wade.



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Comments

The leftist N&R is now trying to make anyone that supports the Bill of Rights look like a domestic terrorist! How typical of them. We do have a Bill of Rights! The left would like to take that away. Like the unconstitutional law Virginia passed that says groups of armed people can't get together. People tried to file suit on that, but could not due to the fact that no one has been charged. I can't believe how fast we want to give up our freedoms. I am not happy that Clark has admitted to watching and spying on people's social media. Welcome to 1984!

Comments

I bet Tommyboy couldn’t wait to write this article after what happened at the capitol. When cities were burning from Antifa, he was silent...just like CNN and the other major “news” outlets

Comments

HCM Response

Halifax County Militia does not condone violent acts. We will never support any such actions. We are Not Radicals and do not support any such actions that would label us as such.

Clarification:

Stage 1 - There are things happening that are out of the ordinary day to day activities being monitored.

Stage 2 - Check your house hold supplies and ensure you have the things you need. We explained that the reason for this Stage to be called, is they are calling for another Covid lockdown, and we want to avoid putting a strain on our local supply stores like we did last year when the grocery stores were hit all at once.

Stage 3 - In the event of an emergency, the Militia will meet and ensure family and friends are ok and not in need of anything. Then we will offer our assistance to local law enforcement in anyway that we can help our community.

Comments

Clarification:

EAM Loyalist does not mean Emergency Action Message.

It alerts to Antifa/Radical like cells committing Violent acts.
Potus Twitter Removal and Social Media Lockdowns

Pelosi and Pence Clas movement refers to Pelosi - Impeachment and Pence possible 25th Amendment action and the military being moved into the Capitol and other locations against Radical Actions.

Comments

Halifax County Militia will not be participating in any kind of Violent Acts and in the case of any emergency we will do anything we can, lawfully, to help our community with the skill sets the Militia has available to help in an emergency.

We are not a Paramilitary Organization. We are a Volunteer Emergency Response Organization that is here to assist in an Emergency and to help our community.

Comments

alifax County Militia loves our Community.

Halifax County Residents are wonderful people, our community may not always agree on Politics, but the morals and values of this community have always been something we can all be proud of.

God Bless this County and all who resides in it.
Sincerely,
Mitzi Thompson - CO Halifax County Militia

Comments

Yes this newspaper is tryingto trigger a response to hurt the true patriots of southern Virginia do not fall for his retoric fake news.

Comments

Mitzi Thompson is the HCM Commander that is true. Some other things that are true about her also are she is a child of God, a daughter, a friend to all that are so lucky. To paint a person in one light does not describe who they are. This article is meant to insight fear and not prescribe to any more information that is factual. There is more to what happened at the capitol than meets the eye. Devastating as it was, investigations into what happened up there are ongoing. Spell that out for the fine folks of Halifax County as well. We deserve truth not propaganda from one vantage point.

Comments

This is the reason I'm a former resident of Halifax County. People have reported their neighbors to law enforcement? A group of people with training and the desire to use it for the welfare of the community in the event the need arises and people are suspicious of that? There is always a need to be prepared and in these uncertain times when tensions and emotions are running so high, being prepared for whatever is what everyone should be focusing on. THIS is why I'm a former resident of Halifax Co. You all should be thankful the Militia there and willing to assist when/if you need it!!!

Comments

^^^ geezus what a bunch of dribble comments. John Wilkes Booth also believed he was a Patriot. Hey Mitzi whats the vetting process to make sure your toy soldiers have the capacity to make life & death decisions? Fuggetouboutit u don't do you. What went down at capitol was insane. Conservatives tough on terror except when the terrorists are conservatives


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