WWBT: Tracking extremist groups: ADL says it’s working with law enforcement to thwart threats in Richmond

WWBT, HENRY GRAFF

The threat that the country and capitals like Richmond are facing did not just come out of thin air. The rush is on for law enforcement to round up those involved in the U.S. Capitol attack and find others who want to do even more harm.

“We have been warning for months about the rising tide, the calls for violence around the election,” said Doron Ezickson, Anti-Defamation League.

It did not start in Charlottesville, but from that failed 2017 Unite the Right rally on, there’s been an undeniable rise in extremist groups.

“From Charlottesville to Capitol Hill we’ve seen a progression of unchallenged white extremists organizing and hate, conspiracy theories, calls to arms that have been propagated by a number of extremist groups,” said Ezickson.

Currently, groups like the Anti-Defamation League are working around the clock with federal, state and local law enforcement to identify bad actors from the attack on the U.S. Capitol and root out any potential threats on the horizon.

“We need to start taking extremists at their word. The chatter continues at this point. They continue to tell us what they plan to do and I think perhaps we’ve now woken up to the fact that we need to take them at their word,” said Ezickson.

The ADL is one of the oldest civil rights and anti-hate groups in America. But that investigative work is now complicated as some of these hate groups have been removed from social media and have moved underground.

“The threat is real. And the worry that exists in our community is real and it didn’t happen overnight. It happened when we started to fall farther and farther from the truth. The truth of election results, the truth of a pandemic, the truth of divisions within our community and what’s the root cause of them,” said Rep. Abigail Spanberger, (D) 7th District.

Meanwhile, The Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police says law enforcement is working on both prevention and protection tactics to keep downtown Richmond from harm.

“Their efforts right now are focused on communications, developing intelligence, making sure that they have resources for the scene,” said Dana Schrad, Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police Executive Director.

Richmond Police and Mayor Levar Stoney are asking people to stay away from downtown. If you see something on social media that is violent or suspicious, report it.

Recent Posts


Feb 29, 2024
Press

During Black History Month, Spanberger Introduces Bill to Name Fredericksburg Post Office for Civil Rights Leader, Gladys P. Todd

Gladys P. Todd Was A Revered School Teacher, Voting Rights Advocate, & Community Organizer in Fredericksburg WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Representative Abigail Spanberger today introduced legislation to rename a Fredericksburg post office after Gladys P. Todd, a prominent leader in the Fredericksburg civil rights movement. Located at 1285 Emancipation Highway in Fredericksburg, the post office […]



Feb 28, 2024
Infrastructure

Spanberger Leads Virginia Lawmakers in Working to Protect $30 Internet Discount for Virginia Families, Fund Affordable Connectivity Program

The “Affordable Connectivity Program” Right Now Helps More than 455,000 Virginia Households Afford High-Speed Internet WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Representative Abigail Spanberger today led members of the Virginia congressional delegation in a bipartisan effort urging the U.S. House Committee on Appropriations to extend funding for a key discount program that allows more Virginia families to […]



Feb 26, 2024
Womens' Issues

In Wake of Alabama Supreme Court Ruling, Spanberger Joins Bicameral Effort to Protect Access to IVF

Congresswoman: “This Ruling Sets a Dangerous Precedent” WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Representative Abigail Spanberger today backed legislation to protect every American’s right to access in-vitro fertilization (IVF) following the Alabama Supreme Court’s ruling that frozen embryos are children under the law. On February 16, 2024, the Alabama Supreme Court ruled that frozen embryos — or […]