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News Clash

Gun Rights Activist Adam Kokesh Arrested In Herndon, VA

Screen Shot 2013-07-10 at 9.21.08 AMPolice searched the Northern Virginia home of libertarian activist Adam Kokesh Tuesday evening and took him into custody, according to a news release posted on Kokesh’s Web site.

Kokesh, a former Marine, was held overnight at the Fairfax County Adult Detention Center, charged with possession of schedule I and II drugs while in possession of a firearm, said Lt. Steve Elbert, a spokesman for the Fairfax County Sheriff’s Office. No additional details were immediately available.

A video posted on YouTube that appears to show activist Adam Kokesh loading a shotgun in Freedom Plaza.

The search warrant was served by U.S. Park Police, a federal agency that is responsible for policing Freedom Plaza, the concrete park on Pennsylvania Avenue NW where in a video Kokesh appears to load a shotgun, in violation of D.C. gun laws. The video was posted to YouTube on July 4.

“We will not be silent. We will not obey,” Kokesh says in the video. “We will not allow our government to destroy our humanity. We are the final American Revolution. See you next Independence Day.”

Kokesh was scheduled to be arraigned Wednesday morning in a Fairfax County courtroom. Possession of Schedule I and II drugs is a felony in Virginia, punishable by up to 10 years in prison and a maximum $2,500 fine. If convicted of possession of Schedule I or II drugs while also in possession of a firearm, Kokesh would face an additional minimum of two years in prison.

(PHOTOS: Kokesh has promoted a variety of causes over the last six years.)

The Iraq war veteran and Internet talk show host unveiled plans in early May to lead an armed “Open Carry March” into the District on July 4. He described the proposed event, in which he said participants would carry loaded guns across the Memorial Bridge from Arlington into Washington, as an act of civil disobedience against “tyranny.”

But the march was canceled after police said they would enforce D.C.’s strict gun laws, which prohibit the carrying of loaded weapons.

According to a news release from Kokesh’s Internet television show, police in cars and helicopters approached Kokesh’s house in Herndon, a suburb about 25 miles west of Washington, about 7:45 p.m. Tuesday. Roads were blocked in the area around the house, in the 1500 block of Snow Flake Court, while the search was underway.

Kokesh’s news release accuses police of “aggressive, forceful conduct,” including deploying a flash grenade in his foyer and using a battering ram to knock in the front door. Those details could not be independently confirmed.

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