One man was arrested Thursday night as infighting continues to plague the trucker convoy protest, which has been annoying drivers in and around Washington, D.C., for weeks.
Maryland State Police told VICE News they arrested Brandon Jackson, 28, “on handgun violations” and he was charged with “illegal possession of a loaded handgun on person.”
“At about 9 p.m. last night, troopers from the Hagerstown Barrack received a call from a citizen with the report of a vehicle blocking the roadway in front of the Hagerstown Speedway,” an MSP spokesperson said. “A trooper on the scene recognized that one of the individuals, later identified as Jackson, was carrying an object in his front pocket which resembled the shape of a firearm.”
Jackson was arrested without incident. Video of the scene shows an officer removing a firearm from Jackson’s pants while he is handcuffed.
Prior to his arrest, Jackson was in a heated debate with fellow convoy supporters. The argument, which was captured on a livestream, appeared to be between two factions fighting over the direction of the trucker convoy. On one side were those affiliated with the central leadership and on the other was a small group of more radical figures, several of which described themselves as Boogaloo Bois—anti-government groups known for their ironic and violent aesthetic.
The fight was over how the convoy was run, what protest actions should be taken, and accusations of corruption. It arose from an incident earlier in the week when a man who called himself “Ricky Bobby” started a confrontation with trucker leadership, which almost ended in blows at the morning meeting, over who gets to speak on the microphone. “Ricky Bobby,” who was being supported by Jackson, was kicked out of the protest grounds for the incident and returned Thursday night and blocked the road to plead his case to be allowed back in.
"Ricky Bobby" pleading his case from the top of a van. Photo via YouTube.
The so-called “people’s convoy” has been in Hagerstown since March 4. The movement was loosely organized around protesting vaccine mandates, which have largely been abandoned or eased across the United States. Every day, in protest against something or other, the convoy tuckers drive loops around the Beltway—the highway that encircles Washington D.C. This weekend they’re planning on having several well-known anti-vaccine speakers talk to the convoy participants.
During Thursday night’s argument, Jackson accused the organizer of planting a streamer named Jersey Jay in their camp to spy on them, and the pro-convoy folks accused Jackson and his camp of trying to stage a mutiny.
"You're doing what Nazis did,” said Jackson. “You're here protesting the government but then being the government. You're being an authoritarian."
At one point, Jackson began to say the people he was arguing with were “sanctioned streamers” who toe the trucker convoy leadership’s line. The convoy streamers accused Jackson of being “antifa,” associated with a Daily Beast journalist who reports on the convoy and being a liberal. When some of the streamers got Jackson to say “Black lives matter,” they all started yelling as if they’d won the argument.
“I told you you were a leftist,” said one.
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