Ammon Bundy Busted in Most Unusual Way

Anti-mask activist arrested for trespassing at State Capitol; cops wheeled him out in chair he was in
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 26, 2020 7:44 AM CDT
Ammon Bundy Wouldn't Leave State Capitol. Cops Got Creative
This image taken from video shows anti-government activist Ammon Bundy, rear, being wheeled into an elevator in a chair following his arrest at the Idaho Statehouse in Boise, Idaho, on Tuesday.   (AP Photo/Keith Ridler)

Anti-government activist Ammon Bundy has been pushing back on COVID-19 safety measures for months, and those efforts came to a head this week at the Idaho Capitol, leading to his arrest Tuesday. The Washington Post reports that as state lawmakers gathered Monday for a special legislative session on coronavirus-related issues, dozens of unmasked demonstrators, some heavily armed, stormed into the Capitol's gallery area, which overlooks the floor of the House of Representatives and had been cordoned off to enforce social distancing. The AP notes a glass door was shattered in the process. "Guards were charged, the gallery was overrun," House Assistant Minority Leader Ilana Rubel, a Democrat, tells the Post of what she witnessed. Republican Idaho House Speaker Scott Bedke tried to restore calm, allowing the protesters to stay.

The AP reports a second protest was held on Tuesday, and this time Bundy, known for leading the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge standoff in 2016, wouldn't get up from his chair and leave when asked to by Idaho State Police—so police officers simply handcuffed him and rolled him away in the wheeled chair he was sitting in. The Idaho Press identified two other people arrested with Bundy for misdemeanor trespassing as 42-year-old Aaron Von Schmidt and 38-year-old Jill Watts. Bundy was also hit with a misdemeanor charge for resisting and obstructing officers. A fourth man, Bryan Bowermaster, 33, was arrested earlier for trespassing for not leaving an area meant for reporters. A statement from an Idaho State Police spokeswoman says an investigation is underway to see if any laws were broken during the protests, per the Post. (More Ammon Bundy stories.)

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