(Trends Wide) — The court hearing of one of the defendants for the assault on the Capitol on January 6 turned controversial after the actor and member of Oath Keepers tried to reject the authority of the United States over him.
The statements of James Beeks, who played Judas in the musical “Jesus Christ Superstar” before being arrested last week for his alleged role in the January 6 riots, led the judge to consider the possibility of sending him to jail. after telling the court that he had “divine” authority and arguing that the government had no jurisdiction over him.
“This is all nonsense,” said Washington City District Court Judge Beryl Howell. “Mr. Beeks, you should shut up if you are not spoken to.”
The Beeks outbursts parrot the beliefs of the “Sovereign Citizen” or “Sovereign Citizen” movement – a belief that government institutions are fraudulent and therefore their supporters do not have to abide by them – although Beeks told Howell that the term “Sovereign Citizen” was an “insult” and an “oxymoron.”
Beeks spoke for himself for most of the hearing after originally saying that he would not be his own attorney as he said “I cannot represent myself because I am myself.”
Before the hearing, the Justice Department did not ask that Beeks be kept in jail pending trial. However, that changed after Beeks tried to impose his “divine” authority.
“A defendant who rejects the jurisdiction of the court … rejects the rule of law,” Howell said, “is not normally released before trial,” although the judge eventually released Beeks with GPS surveillance when she finally agreed. to cooperate, after a private conversation with your attorney.
“I cannot erase from my mind what happened before this,” Howell said before listing the conditions, which included “not having contact with anyone known to be an Oath Keeper.”
Beeks is the second defendant in the Capitol riots whose refusal to acknowledge the judicial system prompts judges to consider sending him to remand, despite prosecutors’ willingness to release them while they await trial.
Pauline Bauer, a Pennsylvania restaurant owner, was sent to jail in September after she also rejected the court’s authority over her, refused to meet basic conditions of release, and challenged the judge who ruled her case.
According to court documents, Beeks joined a group of Oath Keepers on January 6 and attempted to break through a line of police officers guarding a hallway into the Senate chamber. Investigators found Beeks after attending two performances of “Jesus Christ Superstar,” in which Beeks starred as Judas.
Howell ordered Beeks to report to Florida pretrial services before 2 p.m. ET, Wednesday.