Rapper who posed at Capitol riots facing federal charges
The attorney for Bugzie the Don is trying to block search warrants from the DOJ seeking to retrieve his deleted social media posts.
A rapper who traveled from Sandston, Virginia. to the U.S. Capitol to shoot a music video is now facing federal charges for appearing at the deadly insurrection.
Antionne DeShaun Brodnax aka ‘Bugzie the Don’ reportedly told investigators that he was only in the area to shoot a video — and he went to the Capitol after noticing Trump’s Stop the Steal rally and seeing hordes of supporters heading toward the building.
Brodnax claims he followed them because he wanted to take photos and video, according to court documents acquired by The Washington Post.
He subsequently used a photo of himself posing on a SWAT truck with insurrectionists storming the building behind him as the cover for his album The Capital. Tipsters reportedly sent the image to federal agents, and Brodnax was slapped with four federal charges.
Brodnax was arrested on March 11 — days after he released his album — on charges including unlawful entry and disorderly conduct. The feds are now trying to gain access to his social media accounts, which Brodnax’s attorney is fighting.
The rapper said he spent about 40 minutes walking around inside the Capitol building taking “pictures and videos of the architecture,” according to court documents. He denies entering any offices or chambers, stealing, or participating in violence.
He is seen on video asking a woman to take a picture of him sitting on the base of a statue of agronomist Norman Borlaug inside the National Statuary Hall. Friends reportedly contacted Brodnax while was inside the Capitol building and said they spotted him on a CNN broadcast.
“Brodnax followed the crowd to the United States Capitol Building and entered the building after United States Capitol Police moved the gates that blockaded the door,” the affidavit said.
Brodnax is among more than 400 people who have been charged for the attack on the Capitol in January. Two months after the riot, he released his album The Capital on Spotify and Apple Music. His attorney is trying to block DOJ search warrants to retrieve deleted posts from the rapper’s social media accounts, saying that the move violates Brodnax’s constitutional rights.
In March, departing acting U.S. attorney for the District of Columbia, Michael Sherwin, confirmed to 60 Minutes that former President Trump is still under federal investigation for his role in the attack.
“It’s unequivocal that Trump was the magnet that brought the people to DC on 6 January,” said Sherwin. “Now the question is, is he criminally culpable for everything that happened during the siege, during the breach?”
He added, “Based upon what we see in the public record and what we see in public statements in court, we have plenty of people – we have soccer moms from Ohio that were arrested saying, ‘Well, I did this because my president said I had to take back our house.’ “
Trump instructed his supporters to “fight like hell” at a Jan. 6 rally that took place outside of the White House. Afterward, Trump supporters breached the Capitol to oppose the certification of the electoral votes.
Over 100 police officers were injured at the event and one, Brian Sicknick, 42, died after being hit with bear spray.
“If evidence directly relates that chemical to his death, yeah. We have causation, we have a link. Yes. In that scenario, correct, that’s a murder case,” Sherwin said.
theGrio’s Keydra Manns contributed to this report.
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