Most arrested in protests are not associated with antifa
Antifa may be a focus on the right, but it's hard to find in the court system.
Why it matters: Very few of the people charged in this summer's protests and riots appear to be affiliated with highly organized extremist groups, reports AP.
- In thousands of pages of court documents reviewed by AP, the only apparent mention of antifa is in a Boston case in which authorities said an FBI Gang Task Force member was investigating “suspected ANTIFA activity associated with the protests” when a man fired at him and other officers.
- Authorities have not claimed that the man accused of firing the shots is a member of antifa, the umbrella term for leftist militant groups.
The big picture: More than $1 billion in damage was estimated after the uprisings following the death of George Floyd, as Axios' Jennifer A. Kingson reported last month.
- That property damage was accompanied by violence, including wounded police officers, looting and arson.
- But many of those charged had no previous run-ins with the law and no apparent ties to antifa, AP notes.
Between the lines: Many of those charged are young people from the suburbs.
By the numbers: More than 40% of those facing federal charges are white, AP reports. At least a third are Black, and about 6% Hispanic.
- Most are men.
- More than 2/3 are under 30.
- More than 1/4 have been charged with arson, which if convicted means a five-year minimum prison sentence.
- More than a dozen are accused of civil disorder, and others are charged with burglary and failing to comply with a federal order.
The bottom line: FBI Director Christopher Wray told Congress earlier this year that antifa is a "real thing," but it's hard to track because it's "not a group or an organization. It’s a movement or an ideology."