I love this story so much. An 18-year-old protester named Gabriel Agard-Berryhill has been charged with arson for throwing an explosive against the Mark O. Hatfield U.S. Courthouse in Portland earlier this week. The explosive went off with a loud bang and set fire to the plywood on the outside of the building. It was caught on video at the time and you can hear the crowd’s response to the size of the explosion.
Antifa just threw what appears to be an IED at the federal courthouse. pic.twitter.com/fX1UMvsFUw
— Brittany 🍇 (@Brittany3l) July 28, 2020
People online began trying to identify the person responsible. This video shows the person right at the beginning of this clip. He’s wearing a mask but it’s obvious he’s pretty young and notice that distinctive vest he’s wearing.
People quickly found that the same person had been at other recent protests in Portland and always seemed to be wearing that same green, tactical vest. Have you seen that photo of a naked woman sitting in the street facing off with police? She was dubbed Athena. This same man in the same vest was using a shield to protect her the night that picture was taken.
In any case, someone looking to identify the vest discovered an exact match at an online clothing store called Hibbet. And there, in the reviews, was a comment from someone who said she’d bought the vest for her grandson, a protester. It even included a picture that looked just like the guy who had thrown the explosive:
When I saw this circulating a couple of days ago I though ‘This is probably too good to be true.’ Today we got confirmation from the feds who describe following a trail of videos of the suspect. This image from the vest review was the key to finding out his identity.
ATF investigators reviewed social media posts from the night of the explosion and located videos of the incendiary object being thrown. The individual depicted throwing the object, later identified to be Agard-Berryhill, was a young, Caucasian male wearing a green colored vest, camouflage pants, and a mask. Investigators observed the person in other protest-related videos posted online wearing the same vest and attempting to hold a shield in front of a naked woman.
Investigators also found a post on Twitter depicting a product review for the vest. The review included a photo of a person wearing the vest who matched the description of the person seen throwing the explosive device. The review states “I got this [vest] for my grandson who’s a protestor [sic] downtown, he uses it every night and says its [sic] does the job.” Investigators later found the same photo on a Facebook page and, using law enforcement databases, were able to positively identify Agard-Berryhill.
This wannabe tough guy got busted by his grandma. But the final twist in this story is that the grandma, according to now deleted tweets, is a big time Trump supporter who had no idea he was involved in riots.
Agard-Berryhill faces up to 20 years in prison if convicted. The minimum sentence is five years. Given that he was caught on video throwing the explosive this shouldn’t be much of a case. Unless he can make some kind of deal he’s going to do some time. But maybe he can. Someone claiming to be a relative said online that Agard-Berryhill isn’t capable of building this and suggested the bomb must have been given to him by someone else. Now that he’s facing serious time, if there’s anyone else to blame I’m guessing he’s going to do to them on purpose what his grandma did to him by accident.