Honestly, I’m tired of talking about protests and protestors. Especially “protestors,” which is really just a euphemism for a violent scumbag who the media tries to protect by using said euphemism.
Unfortunately for me, that’s what’s going on right now.
Especially troubling, though, is just how vehement the anti-police sentiment actually is with some people.
I mean, I’m not surprised to see it in larger cities like Portland–though I’m a little surprised at just how widespread it might be–but for smaller communities? It’s just not that usual.
And yet, a community of about 6,000 has an officer with a harrowing tale of a “protestor.”
A Wisconsin police officer said a 23-year-old protester pointed a loaded rifle at him — and bit and kicked him — during a Waupaca protest earlier this month, WBAY-TV reported.
The station said Matthew Lee Banta was charged with:
- 2nd degree recklessly endangering, use of a dangerous weapon (point a loaded firearm at an officer)
- battery to a law enforcement officer, use of a dangerous weapon (biting an officer)
- battery to a law enforcement officer (kicking an officer)
- resisting an officer, use of a dangerous weapon
- disorderly conduct, use of a dangerous weapon
A criminal complaint also said a bullet was in the rifle’s chamber, WBAY noted, adding that police found 117 rounds of ammunition on Banta, as well as an eight-inch straight blade knife in a sheath on his belt.
It started with a group of protestors forming up at a local library parking lot, some of which were openly carrying firearms.
An officer approached them and determined they planned on marching. The officer told them sure, they could do that, but to stay out of the road. Unsurprisingly, they didn’t listen.
That’s when things got interesting.
The officer said he asked them to get off the street, WBAY reported. The protesters moved over for a moment and then moved back into the street, the station said, citing the complaint. After several warnings, police started asking protesters for their identification, WBAY reported, adding that they didn’t comply.
Matthew Banta was carrying a rifle and asking, “Is that what you call protecting and serving?” the station said, adding that Banta got in front of an officer and said, “You can do what you want, but we are going to continue to march.”
The officer said he told Banta that if he didn’t get out of the street, he would be arrested, the station said.
More from WBAY:
The officer reached for Banta’s left arm to attempt to arrest him. Banta stepped back and started down a ditch. The officer reached for Banta’s backpack. That’s when Banta “began raising his rifle.” Banta fell back and kicked at the officer, making contact with the officer’s legs. Banta tried standing and “he again began raising his rifle toward [VICTIM OFFICER],” reads the complaint. The officer said he feared for his life and those around him. The officer grabbed Banta by the shoulders and “threw him onto the ground and held him to the ground.”
“Banta was laying on his hands and the rifle was now underneath him,” the complaint said, according to the station. “Banta was then moving his hands around … as though he was trying to manipulate the gun.”
Some of Banta’s buddies are arguing the protest was out of line, but considering what we’ve seen out of that bunch? I’m not buying it.
Now, Banta’s going to get some quality time at the gray-bar motel, as he should. Maybe if more “protestors” did, we’d see less of this kind of thing.
Let me be clear on one thing. Banta appears to have had every right to openly carry a firearm while marching. I don’t think anyone’s disputing that. However, they were marching down the middle of the road and causing a nuisance. They were asked to move to the side–a reasonable request that would allow them to continue exercising their rights without being a nuisance to the public–and they didn’t.
When the officer wanted to see IDs, Banta allegedly tried to resist the lawful request and then apparently pointed a gun at the officer. That’s not within your Second Amendment rights, that’s a threat. Banta’s just lucky that police aren’t as trigger happy as some people think, otherwise, he’d be dead rather than arrested.
If BLM or Antifa supporters want to carry guns, that’s their right. However, they need to learn that there are things you simply don’t do with a firearm except in self-defense from an unlawful attack.
It looks like Banta’s getting that education.