FBI Posts Pictures On Suspects In Defacing Of Jackson Statue

Screen-Shot-2020-06-22-at-8.01.08-PM-1609144893-1592870575690-300x140We have been discussing the destruction and defacing of public monuments, including the iconic bust of George Washington at the center or our own campus at George Washington University.   President Donald Trump has issued an executive order imposing up to ten years imprisonment for those responsible for such destruction. In reality, he has no unilateral authority to impose such criminal penalties, but existing federal laws do allow for prosecution.  There now appears to be a comprehensive effort underway with the FBI releasing images of 15 suspects who authorities believe vandalized a statue of Andrew Jackson recently near the White House.  However, the poster contains an interesting reference.

There are a myriad of different laws allowing for prosecution for such damage to federal property.  This include the general provision under 18 U.S.C. §1361 for any damage exceeding $1000.

1361. Government property or contracts

Whoever willfully injures or commits any depredation against any property of the United States, or of any department or agency thereof, or any property which has been or is being manufactured or constructed for the United States, or any department or agency thereof, or attempts to commit any of the foregoing offenses, shall be punished as follows:

If the damage or attempted damage to such property exceeds the sum of $1,000, by a fine under this title or imprisonment for not more than ten years, or both; if the damage or attempted damage to such property does not exceed the sum of $1,000, by a fine under this title or by imprisonment for not more than one year, or both.

There is also Veterans’ Memorial Preservation and Recognition Act of 2003 (18 U.S.C. 1369) which states:

(a) Whoever, in a circumstance described in subsection (b), willfully injures or destroys, or attempts to injure or destroy, any structure, plaque, statue, or other monument on public property commemorating the service of any person or persons in the armed forces of the United States shall be fined under this title, imprisoned not more than 10 years, or both.

(b) A circumstance described in this subsection is that—

(1) in committing the offense described in subsection (a), the defendant travels or causes another to travel in interstate or foreign commerce, or uses the mail or an instrumentality of interstate or foreign commerce; or

(2) the structure, plaque, statue, or other monument described in subsection (a) is located on property owned by, or under the jurisdiction of, the Federal Government.

(Added Pub. L. 108–29, § 2(a), May 29, 2003, 117 Stat. 772.)

Thus, there are ample laws that apply to such alleged crimes and the executive order merely makes enforcement a priority policy of the Administration.  What is notable about this release is the reference to the crime. Note the second paragraph where the Violent Crime Task Force is cited as pursuing individuals for general destruction of public property. That would refer to not the Veterans’ Memorial Preservation and Recognition Act of 2003.  I am not aware of litigation under the latter law but the task force may be avoiding any questions over whether the Jackson statue is “commemorating the service of any person or persons in the armed forces of the United States.”

There is an old legend that equestrian statues followed a code where one hoof is raised meant that the the rider was wounded in battle while two raised meant that the rider died in battle.  (All four hooves on the ground meant the rider was unharmed). That appears to be an urban legend as shown by the Jackson statue with two hooves raised (Jackson died at 78 in bed surrounded by his family for what was called chronic dropsy and heart failure).   The statue therefore could be questioned as being a celebration of Jackson’s military service, though he is wearing a uniform and was widely known for his military record.  Indeed, the 1853 statue is the oldest full-scale equestrian sculpture in the United States and artist Clark Mills reportedly was inspired to celebrate in Jackson’s triumph over the British in the Battle of New Orleans in the War of 1812.

The availability of alternative grounds for prosecution seems to be preferred over triggering such nuanced interpretative challenges.

30102076-8464541-President_Trump_on_Friday_tweeted_an_FBI_wanted_poster_showing_1-a-92_1593238947275

There is also a provision under D.C. law citing the $1000 damage threshold under Section 22-303:

“Whoever maliciously injures or breaks or destroys, or attempts to injure or break or destroy, by fire or otherwise, any public or private property, whether real or personal, not his or her own, of the value of $1,000 or more, shall be fined not more than the amount set forth in § 22-3571.01 or shall be imprisoned for not more than 10 years, or both, and if the property has some value shall be fined not more than the amount set forth in § 22-3571.01 or imprisoned for not more than 180 days, or both.”

However, the D.C. police chief has stated that he made the “tactical decision” not to intervene as some statues were destroyed or defaced.

It seems therefore that Section 1361 will be the main focus of the enforcement effort under the executive order.

100 thoughts on “FBI Posts Pictures On Suspects In Defacing Of Jackson Statue”

  1. Election Postponement – Not A Vote By Survey Monkey

    President Trump must postpone the November election due to COVID-19, understanding that a fair and equitable election is impossible and that all other economic and social activities have been modified and/or suspended for reasons of the pandemic. To conduct a legitimate election, voters must appear and have their identity confirmed at a polling place. Democrats have already cancelled their convention. Communists (liberals, progressives, socialists, democrats, RINOs) are promoting “vote-by-mail” knowing that they will be afforded an historic opportunity to manipulate and defraud the vulnerable voting system. Communists (liberals, progressives, socialists, democrats, RINOs), in order to seize unfair advantages, absurdly propose that America surrender its self-governance to Survey Monkey. Communists (liberals, progressives, socialists, democrats, RINOs) employed our South Korean “allies,” K-pop, to enlist and encourage Tik Tok users to crash President Trump’s Tulsa rally. Communists (liberals, progressives, socialists, democrats, RINOs) “harvested” ballots to conquer Orange County, CA and other districts. Lincoln won 1860 with 38.9% and 1864 with brute military force. Joe Kennedy erased a Nixon victory and bought the presidency for JFK through Mob purchases in Chicago. Is it conceivable that the communists will not maximally corrupt and manipulate “vote-by-mail” to obtain a November victory? Of course they will. To communists (liberals, progressives, socialists, democrats, RINOs), the ends justify the means. No ethic, regulation, law, promise, duty or point of honor will ever prevent them from attempting to steal power. The essence of the Republic must be preserved at all costs, as Lincoln would say. President Trump must postpone the election due to COVID-19 until such time as the pandemic is in sufficient and quantifiable decline.

    Conditions of fair weather, health, peace and tranquility must be presumed for the holding of elections. The danger to the public of the chaos of civil unrest and a pandemic must require postponement of elections to preserve their accuracy. President Obama issued an executive order to override the authority of Congress with regard to immigration and DACA. President Trump must act similarly under current inimical and adverse conditions to preserve the integrity of U.S. elections.

    1. Simple answer to simplistic question. Is it Constitutional? Answer No.

      Choices. Constitutional Amendment.

      9th and 10th Amendment. States and Federal Governments were not granted the power to make such a change for any reason. without a Constitutional Amendment.

      End of conversation.

  2. March 20, 2020

    “Two months ago, January 20, 2020 – a date which will live in infamy – the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by the Communist People’s Republic of China.
    “The United States was at peace with that nation and, wittingly or unwittingly, through criminal dereliction and negligence and attempting to obtain the cloak of plausible deniability, the People’s Republic of China released on the world the COVID-19 biological weapon.

    “China has, therefore, undertaken a surprise offensive extending throughout the World. The Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy has directed his entire Cabinet that all measures be taken for the defense of the United States.

    “With confidence in the United States Center For Disease Control and with the unbounding determination of the American people the Untied States will gain the inevitable triumph so help us God.
    “Congress must declare that since the unprovoked and dastardly attack by China on January 20, 2020, a state of war has existed between the United States and China.”

    – President Donald J. Trump

  3. Wasn’t their a hit on Andrew Jackson dba Old Hickory?

    THE Andrew Jackson quoted as saying, “I killed the banks.”

    https://www.google.com/search?q=andrew+jackson+i.killed.the.bank&client=ms-android-samsung-gn-rev1&prmd=ivsn&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwjch_yCmKTqAhWQtZ4KHVc9A_0Q_AUoAXoECA0QAQ&biw=412&bih=733&dpr=2.63#imgrc=70-NgO7U2YFUmM

    People should have mad respect for Old Hickory, he stood up to the Banking System, that is some serious 😳 you know what.

    But of course, ppl only want to see what they choose / want to see.

    1. Didn’t Jackson personally and physically throw European bankers out of the White House.

  4. Black Cop At Floyd’s Death:

    It Was His Third Day As Full Police Officer

    In December, Mr. Kueng graduated from the police academy. For most of his field training, Derek Chauvin, with 19 years on the job, was his training officer.

    At one point, Mr. Kueng, upset, called his mother. He said he had done something during training that bothered a supervising officer, who reamed him out. Ms. Kueng did not know if that supervisor was Mr. Chauvin.

    Mr. Chauvin also extended Mr. Kueng’s training period. He felt Mr. Kueng was meeting too often with a fellow police trainee, Thomas Lane, when responding to calls, rather than handling the calls on his own, Ms. Kueng said.

    But on May 22, Mr. Kueng officially became one of about 80 black officers on a police force of almost 900. In recent years, the department, not as racially diverse as the city’s population, has tried to increase the number of officers of color, with limited success.

    That evening, other officers held a small party at the Third Precinct station to celebrate Mr. Kueng’s promotion. The next evening, he worked his first full shift as an officer, inside the station. On that Sunday, he worked the 4 p.m. to 2 a.m. patrol shift, his first on the streets.

    On May 25, Mr. Kueng’s third day on the job, Mr. Kueng and Mr. Lane, now partnered up despite both being freshly minted rookies, were the first officers to answer a call of a counterfeit $20 bill being passed at a corner store. They found Mr. Floyd in a car outside.

    After they failed to get Mr. Floyd into the back of a squad car, Mr. Chauvin and Tou Thao, another officer, showed up.

    As Mr. Chauvin jammed his knee into the back of Mr. Floyd’s neck, Mr. Kueng held down Mr. Floyd’s back, according to a probable cause statement filed by prosecutors.

    Mr. Chauvin kept his knee there as Mr. Floyd repeated “I can’t breathe” and “mama” and “please.” Through the passing minutes, Mr. Kueng did nothing to intervene, prosecutors say. After Mr. Floyd stopped moving, Mr. Kueng checked Mr. Floyd’s pulse. “I couldn’t find one,” Mr. Kueng told the other officers.

    Critics of the police said the fact that none of the junior officers stopped Mr. Chauvin showed that the system itself needed to be overhauled.

    Edited From: “The Black Officer Who Detained George Floyd Had Pledged To Fix The Police”

    Today’s New York Times

    1. Peter – there is a real problem with this article. Chauvin showed up before they had problems getting him in the car. We have tape of him arriving. The NYT is crap for fact-checking.

    1. Independent Bob – the Marxist have already spray-painted the “President’s Church” in Lafayette Square, but I am sure that is okay since it is Episcopalian. 😉

  5. Paul C Schulte, what a fool! This op-ed writer is a professional who knows about post-mortems. But you could attempt to read the reference that Absurd x22 cited; I doubt that you are capable of it.

    And, no, I am not your “buddy”!

    1. David Benson is the God Emperor of Making Stuff Up and owes me forty-five citations (one from the OED, one from the town ordinances and two from the Old Testament), an equation and the source of a quotation, and his mental health professional certificate after eighty-one weeks, and needs to cite all his work from now on. and is suffering from cementia David, can we be frenemies? Again, it is all open to interpretation and the writer’s opinion matches the agenda of the NYT. If it didn’t, they do not have the editorial integrity to print it.

    2. Again a few words adding up to no information no source provided and nothing but nothing. Doesn’t add up to enough to call it Bullshevikism. So muchy for Comrade Benton.

  6. Paul C Schulte — According to Dr Hurt or Hart, the TNYT op-ed writer, measuring that in corpse does not indicate the dosage when alive.

    Anyway, the coroner concluded homicide. Learn to read with comprehension despite your mental affliction of thinking people owe you.

    1. David Benson is the God Emperor of Making Stuff Up and owes me forty-five citations (one from the OED, one from the town ordinances and two from the Old Testament), an equation and the source of a quotation, and his mental health professional certificate after eighty-one weeks, and needs to cite all his work from now on. and is suffering from cementia – David, buddy, I can call you buddy after all these months, right? David, do you REALLY think a newpaper that fired an editor for allowing a conservative op-ed, is going to allow an op-ed that goes against their agenda? Come on, son. Even you aren’t that daft.

  7. Paul C Schulte — Don’t be a fool! Read the recent op-ed in TNYT about this; the writer is an expert. Read the coroner’s report.

    Once handcuffed, the police are responsible for the prisoner’s well-being. That includes not murdering the prisoner.

    Learn to think despite your mental affliction, hmmm?

    1. David Benson is the God Emperor of Making Stuff Up and owes me forty-five citations (one from the OED, one from the town ordinances and two from the Old Testament), an equation and the source of a quotation, and his mental health professional certificate after eighty-one weeks, and needs to cite all his work from now on. and is suffering from cementia – David, I have read both coroner’s reports. 11 mg of fentanyl is lethal.

  8. Cindy Bragg — So must not be “my team”, hmmm?

    Try to avoid just Making Stuff Up.

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