News & Politics

Double-Standard Justice: Two Charged With Using Bear Spray on Officer Brian Sicknick at Capitol Hill Riot

Double-Standard Justice: Two Charged With Using Bear Spray on Officer Brian Sicknick at Capitol Hill Riot
AP Photo/Alex Brandon

The FBI announced the arrest of two Capitol Building protesters for assaulting Officer Brian Sicknick with bear spray. The day after the protest and riot, Sicknick died.


Sicknick’s family was told his cause of death was a stroke, but no other information has been released about his autopsy and his body was cremated. In a phone call with his brother hours after the siege on the Capitol Building, Sicknick told him that he’d been sprayed a couple of times, but was fine.

But nearly ten weeks after the outburst of violence at the Capitol, there’s been no other information released about the popular officer’s cause of death. Now, in its clear attempt to link the death to protesters, the FBI announced the arrests of a West Virginia business owner, George Tannios, and a Pennsylvania man, Julian Elie Khater, for using the bear spray to assault Sicknick.

Bear spray is a regular feature of nearly every antifa and BLM riot and is used on police and others with near impunity.

Rioters in Portland used bear spray and other weapons over the weekend.

Masked antifa thugs attacked the Portland Democrat headquarters in January, armed with all kinds of explosives … and bear spray.


But the double standard of justice goes deeper.

The Capitol Hill protesters and rioters have been treated differently than others arrested for attacking federal buildings.

In the siege outside the White House by antifa and Black Lives Matter protesters and rioters, “dozens of rioters” were arrested and then released, though the siege and fire-setting at the “president’s church” across from the White House forced the Secret Service to rush President Trump to safety in the White House bunker for fear of being overrun by the out-of-control rioters.

After the June 2020 D.C. riots, residents hid rioters and protesters being chased by police for being out after the riot-induced curfew. NBC’s Andrea Mitchell feted the homeowners as “good Samaritans.

The Washington Post ran a story lauding an antifa and BLM rioters’ radical-chic fashion shoot showing off rioters’ dress and weapons.

In the days and weeks following the Capitol Hill attack, by mostly Trump-supporting protesters and rioters (with a few exceptions), nearly 300 people were arrested and kept locked up. No bail was granted for most.


One of the accused, 18-year-old Bruno Cua, a homeschooled kid in his senior year, was put in solitary lock-up for a time and granted no bail initially. Many of the Capitol Hill rioters have not been granted bail.

Cua scaled the scaffolding outside the Capitol and was accused of pushing a police officer. He’s been charged with 12 counts related to scaling the scaffolding, carrying a “deadly weapon” – a collapsible bat, which he never used – and assaulting the officer, who can’t identify the perpetrator. To say the case against the 18-year-old is thin is to underestimate the meaning of thin. But he spent three weeks in solitary confinement before being moved into a cell with 30 other inmates.

Worse, as Julie Kelly reports in American Greatness, Bruno’s parents were considered unfit to return the young man to because of their belief that the election was rigged against President Trump.

Kelly sums up the one-sided prosecution this way:

The Cua case has nothing to do with seeking justice for the melee on January 6 or appropriately prosecuting one of the participants. It has nothing to do with making sure the nation’s capital or Cua’s hometown remains safe.

It has everything to do with punishing a family who dared to show up in support of Donald Trump and dared to question the legitimacy of the 2020 election.

By contrast, in September of 2020, 26-year-old Kevin Phomma was part of a riotous mob at the Portland, Ore., office of Immigration and Customs Enforcement.


The U.S. Attorneys Office in Portland issued a press release confirming that Phomma had been charged and released after they had found bear spray and a knife on the rioter.

As Portland officers began dispersing the crowd, Phomma was witnessed pepper spraying officers. Phomma positioned himself with a shield in one hand and a spray can in the other. Phomma doused several officers with pepper spray while they attempted to arrest him. Once in custody, officers discovered the pepper spray was in fact a powerful bear deterrent pepper spray. While searching Phomma, officers also found a sheathed, three-inch dagger attached to his hip. Phomma was later released.

He was not charged with assault with a deadly weapon, only civil disorder.

His case appears to be ongoing – probably until the media memory-hole it.

Fully one-third of the 90 Portland riot cases brought by federal authorities under the Trump administration were dropped by the Biden administration. Indeed, nearly all of those arrested and charged with state crimes stemming from the Portland riots have been dropped by the local DA. The double standard of justice has been so egregious that a special counsel has been named to investigate Multnomah County District Attorney Mike Schmidt.


Double-standard justice is a feature, not an anomaly, of justice in Portland, Oregon.

One of these things is not like the other.


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