'Boogaloo' Terrorism Suspect Now Also Charged With Possession Of Child Pornography
On May 30, Las Vegas police arrested three self-identified "Boogaloo Boys" on their way to a Black Lives Matter protest, armed with Molotov cocktails and other weapons, in hopes of provoking the kind of civil unrest and violence that could lead to another Civil War. The men, Stephen "Kiwi" Parshall, 35, Andrew Lynam, 23, and William L. Loomis, 40, were all white, all former military, and had all allegedly expressed to an FBI informant that they were very serious about wanting to overthrow the United States government.
They all face federal and state charges related to conspiracy to commit an act of terrorism, the federal charges alone adding up to at least 30 years in prison and $500,000 in fines for all of them.
And one of them may be in there for a lot longer, as when Stephen Thomas Parshall was arrested, FBI agents found a whole bunch of child pornography on his phone.
Via the Department of Justice:
According to court documents, Parshall was arrested on May 30, 2020. Law enforcement had learned of Parshall's alleged participation in a conspiracy to cause destruction during protests that evening in Las Vegas, and of his alleged membership in the "Boogaloo" movement, a term used by extremists to signify a coming civil war and/or collapse of society. When law enforcement officers executed search warrants after the arrest, they located 10 images of child pornography, as well as numerous images of child erotica, on Parshall's cellular phone.
The minimum statutory penalty for the offense of sexual exploitation of children is 15 years in prison, and the maximum statutory penalty is 30 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. The minimum and maximum statutory sentences are prescribed by Congress and are provided here for informational purposes only.
TRIGGER WARNING for it getting much worse: An investigation into Parshall was launched after the discovery of the photographs, and police soon discovered that the child in them is Parshall's stepdaughter, whose age is redacted but who the Las Vegas Review Journal says is believed to be 14 now. The girl identified herself in the photos and told police that Parshall and another friend of his, Phillip W. Merrill, had been sexually abusing and raping her since 2015.
The girl reportedly told investigators "'OK, I'm just gonna be completely honest with you. I've been having to, um, have sex with my dad, but I haven't been able to tell anybody about it … and I tried telling my mom once, but she thought it was a whole lie.'"
The mother says she remembers the girl telling her and confirms that she thought it was a lie. At the time of Parshall's arrest, he was living with the girl's mother and four daughters between the ages of 4 and 13.
Parshall maintains his innocence, but Merrill has since confessed.
Merrill admitted to detectives that he had abused the girl while babysitting and described the alleged sexual acts he forced her to perform.
"Phillip stated that he has had a hard time dealing with this and that he knew what he did was wrong," the report says. "Phillip then on his own accord stated he would like to write an apology letter to (the girl).
Merrill "proceeded to confess his crimes on paper," the report adds.
"Phillip was asked what he thinks should happen, and he stated the obvious answer would be to go to jail, but that is not what he wanted to happen."
In addition to the federal child pornography charges, Parshall has also been charged in the state of Nevada with 23 counts of felony sexual assault and three counts of lewdness.
It is unlikely that those who share Parshall's politics and also consider themselves great crusaders against child sex trafficking will have as much interest in this very real story or others like it as they have in the ones they've made up themselves. The ones that involve special outfits and secret codes and symbolism and satanic rituals and magic immortality drugs made from children's pineal glands and world-controlling thousand-year-old cults and lizard people. It's not as "interesting" to them. They don't get the sweet, sweet buzz of getting to feel like "digital soldiers" fighting to #SaveTheChildren from Wayfair cabinets. It's just horrible and sickening and depressing and, worst of all, it's real.
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Robyn Pennacchia is a brilliant, fabulously talented and visually stunning angel of a human being, who shrugged off what she is pretty sure would have been a Tony Award-winning career in musical theater in order to write about stuff on the internet. Follow her on Twitter at @RobynElyse