Updated December 11, 2020 - 7:33 am
Suspected Nevada members of the right-wing boogaloo movement will be prosecuted first by federal authorities over an alleged conspiracy to cause violence during Black Lives Matter protests.
Stephen Parshall, 36, Andrew Lynam, 23, and William Loomis, 40, are set to stand trial March 8, 2021, in federal court on felony charges of conspiring to cause destruction by fire and explosive and possessing an unregistered destructive device, a Molotov cocktail.
All three men, who have military backgrounds, have pleaded not guilty and are in federal custody on no bail.
They also face a June 21 trial in Clark County District Court on felony terrorism and explosives charges.
Parshall also has been charged in Las Vegas Justice Court with sexually assaulting his teenage stepdaughter and faces related federal charges of sexual exploitation of children, coercion and enticement and child pornography.
There is no trial date in the state case, which has not yet moved to District Court. But a Jan. 5 federal trial has been set.
“I’m fairly confident that both of his federal trials will take place before the state trials,” Parshall’s lawyer Robert Draskovich said Thursday. “There are a substantial number of backlogged trials in state court due to COVID-19.”
The three extremist group members were indicted June 17 by both federal and county grand juries in a rare coordinated effort by law enforcement authorities to curb the protest violence.
The trio also is alleged to have planned to firebomb a power substation and damage federal buildings.
FBI agents arrested the men on May 30 after they learned the defendants were prepared to toss Molotov cocktails at police during a Black Lives Matter demonstration that night.
The FBI, with the help of an informant, had infiltrated the group and worked the investigation jointly with Las Vegas police and other law enforcement agencies.
Nevada U. S. Attorney Nicholas Trutanich praised the work of investigators at the time.
“Within days, we were able to send a strong message that we were supporting the protesters and that violence in these peaceful protests would not be tolerated,” Trutanich said.
The extremist boogaloo movement, which is decentralized with no national leaders, believes in an impending civil war and ultimate societal collapse.
Authorities contend the group members attempted to carry out their plans as if they were conducting a military operation.
Contact Jeff German at firstname.lastname@example.org or 702-380-4564. Follow @JGermanRJ on Twitter. German is a member of the Review-Journal’s investigative team, focusing on reporting that holds leaders and agencies accountable and exposes wrongdoing. Support our journalism.