A member of Antifa has been charged with the shooting of an antivaccine mandate protester in Olympia, Washington.
Benjamin Anthony Varela, a New York Post reporter, was arrested and charged on Thursday with first-degree assault with a deadly weapon.
It is not clear why local news reported that someone had been arrested, but didn’t release their name until today.
So here’s an example of how they reported the shooting on Thursday.
#BREAKING: Olympia Police arrest and book 36-year-old Olympia resident on assault 1st in this shooting that wounded Tusitala “Tiny” Toese of the Proud Boys at the Intercity Transit Station in Downtown Olympia on Saturday, September 4th. pic.twitter.com/xV8kF57fQE— Preston Phillips 🇺🇸 (@PrestonTVNews) September 24, 2021
The local media finally reported the name today after it ran in the New York Post first.
NEW: Just confirmed w/ Olympia PD that 36-year-old Olympia resident Benjamin Anthony Varela is suspect in shooting that wounded Proud Boys member in Downtown Olympia on 9/4.
Charge: Assault 1st degree while armed with a deadly weapon.
Held in Thurston Co. Jail on $100K bail. pic.twitter.com/Ps2EwSDiaA
— Preston Phillips 🇺🇸 (@PrestonTVNews) September 27, 2021
The incident took place on September 4th, as we reported. It involved a clash between Antifa people trying to disrupt a protest against the anti-vaccine mandate. The Proud Boys provided voluntary security. Antifa people had been in an altercation with the Proud Boys. They were running towards the Intercity Transit Station, when one of their groups turned around and shot at the Proud Boys behind. The shooting left Tusitala Toose with serious injuries.
Samoan right-wing activist Tusitala Toese was shot in Olympia, Wash. Antifa organized a direct action against a medical freedom protest at the state Capitol. Video by @JLeeQuinn: pic.twitter.com/oZSc1QJRDf— Andy Ngô 🏳️🌈 (@MrAndyNgo) September 4, 2021
According to Varela’s criminal complaint, Varela said that the shooter ran into an alleyway and removed his black bloc clothing. He then changed into a bright yellowish/greenish T-shirt, and then “discarded” his black tee-shirt and watch cap in the alley.
From The New York Post:
The criminal complaint says the police interviewed Varela’s live-in girlfriend, Jessica Lynn O’Connor, 34, who admitted they attended the direct action together on Sept. 4 while in black attire. The detective obtained a search warrant for their property and found a handgun under the bedroom.
“Jessica told me the handgun was not hers and it belonged to Benjamin. She told me all guns and gun-related items belonged to Benjamin,” the affidavit says.
Varela is currently being held on $100,000 bail.
The Post claims that he has a history of posting radical leftist views. After his arrest, he allegedly deleted most of his social media accounts. However, they claim that his Twitter bio once read “professional anarchist and thug”
At the beginning of the pandemic in March 2020, Varela wrote: “Start hurting people, the coronavirus is going to provide great cover for a real revolution.” He called for people to take up arms. The same month, he posted a rant wishing that both conservatives and liberals die of the coronavirus. In 2018, he wrote, “9/11 was good because the US is a Nazi state so we deserved it.”
This bail is quite high and appropriate for the charges. We can also hope there is a real prosecution. This is different from Portland. Portland would fall under the authority of the far-left district attorney. It is in Olympia, Washington. If he is convicted or pleads guilty, there could be some serious punishment. We will keep you posted. It’s good to know that they did indeed follow up and arrest and indict him.