Proud Boy UCC-1’s Work Ethic Saved Him from a Felony Charge

The other day the government released Powerpoint presentations (Zach Rehl, Charles Donohoe) from detention hearings for the two Proud Boys, as well as the Telegram chats one or the other side used as part of those detention disputes. (The times on the chats are UTC-8, probably because they came from Ethan Nordean’s phone after it was seized in Washington; add three hours to get the time in DC.)

January 4 5:17 to 5:42PM

January 4 5:50 to 7:06PM

January 5 8:58PM to January 6 12:03AM

January 6 1:00 to 4:07PM

January 30 to February 1, Nordean and Donohoe

In general, the texts show how, in the wake of Enrique Tarrio’s arrest on January 4, Donohoe took the lead in attempting to set up two new Telegram chats — New MOSD, with just a few leaders, and Boots on the Ground, with around 60 Proud Boys (not all of whom were present, it seems) — so the Feds wouldn’t have access to their organizational efforts via Tarrio’s phone, which they correctly assumed the government had seized (though it’s not clear when the phone was exploited). The Proud Boys struggled to figure out what to do with Tarrio, with Donohoe seemingly warning not to add Tarrio back into a chat until they had confirmed he was free and using an uncompromised phone, to prevent the FBI from logging on under Tarrio’s credentials.

They seem to know that Tarrio also spoke with someone outside their circle about his flag-burning, and considered warning that person. They interspersed that conversation with discussions about how to get more Proud Boys to the riot, perhaps picking them up in Philadelphia or Greensboro. For several hours, Donohoe kept adding names, begging for help, explaining what he was doing as he went.

Because of the time crunch, Donohoe added everyone as Admins (I’m not familiar enough with Telegram to understand potential repercussions of that, with regards to FBI’s ability to get more of these chats as they arrested more Proud Boys).

On January 5, their communication plans were still in flux, with one apparent cell leader — who, on account of the redaction, appears not to have been arrested yet — communicating with his cell separately.

Nordean was supposed to be in charge, but he was AWOL for several hours leading up to 9PM (rather interesting hours on January 5 to be unreachable).

There are texts about adding someone to the MOSD leadership channel that might be consistent with Tarrio rejoining the chats after his release (the government redacted his name in some places but not all of them).

Whether or not they added Tarrio to the thread, Biggs — who was with the AWOL Nordean — seems to have been in contact with Tarrio.

Great swaths of the texts from January 6 — almost 10 full pages — are redacted. What’s left are seemingly one after another Proud Boy (not all present) claiming to be storming the Capitol right at 1:02 PM.

At 3:38 PM Donohoe says the Proud Boys will regroup, only to express shock that Trump[‘s Administration] would call out the National Guard against rioters.

The exhibits with just texts are actually far more redacted than the Donohoe Powerpoint — the latter of which includes damning details like Donohoe acknowledging, in advance, that they could face gang charges.

In addition, in the Donohoe Powerpoint, the government lays out a discussion from after the insurrection where someone — perhaps Biggs — expresses some kind of regret, something to make Donohoe push back.

REHL: Ah shit forgot you [Biggs] had to roll, was hoping to have some celebratory beers with yall after this epic fuckin day, I’ll drink one for ya

BIGGS: We will one day. This day lives in infamy or [sic] the ages

DONOHOE: Yeah I feel like a complete warrior. . . .I stood on that front line the entire time and pushed it twice . . . Thank God we were not wearing colors . . . We should never wear colors ever again for any event . . . Only for meetups . . .

[Approximately 12 Minute Gap with No Messages in Message Thread]

DONOHOE: Stop right there . . . All of what you said doesn’t matter . . . We stormed the capitol unarmed . . . And took it over unarmed . . . The people are fucking done . . . Wait when joe biden tells us we are all criminls [sic] [emphasis original]

The gap is interesting, however, because every Telegram text involving Nordean from the key days amounted to a deleted attachment to a text.

We know Nordean would text, though, because he did later in January, when he and Donohoe were discussing Nordean’s plan for a temporary move to North Carolina.

Note, if texts involving Nordean were deleted, they may not be deleted in phones seized from other participants.

Which leads me an obscure detail revealed in that Powerpoint that nevertheless explains something that has been out there for some time: the logic behind an unindicted Proud Boy co-conspirator’s status.

By March 1, prosecutors had details about all these Telegram texts. Yet in a detention hearing for Nordean on March 3, they backed off providing proof, leading to claims that prosecutors had gotten over their skis on Nordean’s prosecution. But the government rolled out the texts themselves — as well as the existence of an unindicted co-conspirator, referred to as UCC-1, in the Proud Boy Leadership conspiracy indictment on March 15. In a sealed filing before unsealing the indictment, the government had asked Judge Tim Kelly to hide all that until Rehl and Donohoe could be arrested. At the time, it seemed that UCC-1 was the likely source for the Telegram texts.

It turns out that was wrong, however. At a hearing on May 4, Nordean’s attorney Nick Smith revealed that the government had obtained all the texts from Nordean’s phone, a password for which his wife shared with the FBI (which explains the time zone and may explain why Nordean’s content was deleted when his that of co-conspirators was not).

Texts from early on January 6, not replicated (or left redacted) in the full exhibits explain that UCC-1 was not at the insurrection because he had just gotten a new job that he didn’t want to fuck up, yet.

DONOHOE: Are you here? …

UCC-1: No I started a new job, don’t want to fuck it up yet

DONOHOE: Well fuck man

UCC-1: There will be plenty more I’m sure lol

UCC-1: I want to see thousands of normies burn that city to ash today

Person-2: Would be epic

UCC-1: The state is the enemy of the people

That provides a ready explanation for why DOJ might seek to get UCC-1 to cooperate: he wasn’t present, and any role had had in decision-making leading up to the insurrection pales in comparison to Tarrio’s role. Plus, maybe he was telling the truth about trying to keep that new job. As soon as investigators saw why this guy didn’t show, they would understand a motive he might have to cooperate.

If that’s right, that not only would provide a direct witness to these leadership chats, but it might provide an even fuller set of Telegram chats than what the charged co-conspirators know about.

16 replies
  1. Peterr says:

    Marcy, what do you make of the transcripts referring to UCC-1, rather than a more generic “Individual X”? Identifying the person as a co-conspirator makes it clear that the govt thinks this person is inside the planning, and “un-indicted” indicates that this is not someone already charged, but why would the govt feel it necessary to reveal either of these things, especially the un-indicted part?

    • Ginevra diBenci says:

      I was wondering the same thing, Peterr. Also, hasn’t the government including enough identifying detail in these public documents for anyone involved in the broader org chart (plus their adult family members) to recognize this person? (That is, “the one with the new job who didn’t want to risk it.”)

      • subtropolis says:

        As I understand it, the obfuscation of names has less to do with protecting the identity from the Bad Guys than from the public at large. Because this person is not being charged, it’s deemed that it would be unfair to drag their name into it. It’s the same reason that a company’s name would be obfuscated.

      • Eureka says:

        That part I’m not so sure about (in the looser sense, referring to informants as candidates for UCC-1– like the guy, the alleged Philly PB VP, whose identifying info was removed from a Reuters article re PB informants and is not identified as attending 1/6. Tho per the published 2019 chat this one was supposedly keeping tabs on “antifa”). RW spin machines would have a field day over such a shit-stirrer (regardless of history, facts) that called out “work” from 1/6.

    • Rayne says:

      I’m going to let this slide on the assumption this is a veiled reference to a comic character and not a subtle effort at promulgating conspiracy theory.

      I’d use caution with the comic take since there have been actual human beings whose name you appear to be riffing on.

  2. Eureka says:

    Their looking to gather more PBs reminds me, Marcy — back when you were tweeting about ?!? why on earth that Chicago cop would have taken the Pennsy Turnpike through vs veered over by Harrisburg: meant to mention that it could have been to gather PBs who’d assembled there for the 1/6 Harrisburg Capitol event. The Lehigh PBs (from outer-Philly burbs neck of the woods) were out there and one tried to create an “alibi” for Zach Rehl, claiming post-facto that Rehl was with them in Harrisburg 1/6 (per screenshots of social media published by PB-tracker bloggers I’d linked here before). Made me wonder who might have been out there and got reassigned or relocated to DC, anyway.

    Plus, didn’t that Chicago cop swing down Baltimore way (or in some way not directly to DC — I recall discussion/debate that it wasn’t the most efficient route). [Now that we see Biggs talking about Tarrio being in Baltimore…]

    Also, does Telegram have a reposting function where someone else’s text gets repeated without add-ons? That part in the chats where the several identical (text, misspelling, spacing) “Storming the capital building right now!!” posts show up in sequence seems weird, otherwise.

  3. harpie says:

    The Proud Boys struggled to figure out what to do with Tarrio, with Donohoe seemingly warning not to add Tarrio back into a chat until they had confirmed he was free and using an uncompromised phone, to prevent the FBI from logging on under Tarrio’s credentials.

    That reminded me of this:

    A little way down in this comment is a VIDEO by Ford Fischer posted at 4:54 PM · Jan 5, 2021, where this happens:

    Red Coat Woman [to Tarrio]: Diane’s really worried about you too. She was just here.
    T: OK. Get my other number down. [he enters something into her phone]

  4. harpie says:

    What’s left are seemingly one after another Proud Boy (not all present) claiming to be storming the Capitol right at 1:02 PM.

    1] 1:02 PM Rhodes to Minuta Call 1:48
    2] 1:02 PM PENCE tweets three images-a letter indicating he will follow protocols in counting the Electoral College votes.

    From: “Fight for Trump”: Video Evidence of Incitement at the Capitol [3:50]

  5. Eureka says:

    The gov at some point also renumbered the Persons (or is treating them inconsistently); it comes off anachronistically as the difference is seen in the Donohoe powerpoint Marcy links above, which, while filed on July 6, is dated April 16th.

    “Person 3” in the Donohoe ppt is called “Person 1” in the May 13th (served and filed) gov response to Nordean re detention discussed/linked in Marcy’s DOJ Militia Math post [and in that same May 13 filing, a — the — particularly incendiary statement attributed to UCC-1, including therein (p.7 IIRC), is mistakenly attributed to Person 1 elsewhere (p.5 IIRC) in that document].

  6. pdaly says:

    I still don’t get Donohoe’s message to fellow insurrectionists on his chat channel ‘to be put into everything:’

    “DONOHOE (aka YutYut Cowabunga): Hey have been instructed and listen to me real good! There is no planning of any sorts. I need to be put into whatever new thing is created. Everything is compromised and we can be looking at Gang charges”

    Is it an instruction to take out Tarrio’s name and ONLY put himself in?
    Or does Donohoe want to be kept in the loop about everything (including planning he disagrees with) so that he can shut it down if it’s not what he wants? Does he have the admin ability to do so?

    If it were me, I’d rather not WANT to know about everything new and would ask NOT “to be put into whatever new thing is created” and thereby claim ignorance if something goes wrong.

  7. pdaly says:

    In reading up on Donohoe this quote took on an unexpected meaning.

    “DONOHOE: Stop right there… All of what you said doesn’t
 matter…We stormed the capitol unarmed…And took it
 over unarmed…The people are fucking done… Wait when 
joe biden tells us we are all criminls” [sic]

    Donohoe served 2 tours in Iraq while with the U.S. Marines from 2006 to 2010. 

    Then he worked as a contractor for the U.S. Department of State. 
He also worked as a contractor for either Xe or Academi the subsequent newer names of Erik Prince’s erstwhile Blackwater.

    So I assume Donohoe was aware of the 12/22/20 news, (right before the 1/6/21 insurrection), that Trump pardoned 4 Blackwater guards for their 2014 conviction of the 2007 “Nisour Square massacre” in which 17 unarmed Iraqi civilians were killed and 20 other people were injured when the Blackwater guards opened fire.

    What I did not realize: these Blackwater guards initially had their case dismissed by a judge in USDC in DC on 12/29/2009. However, then VP Joe Biden, overseeing U.S. policy in Iraq, promised Iraqi leaders that the U.S. DOJ would appeal their dismissal. The charges were reinstated 2011, and the four guards were put on trial.

    The ‘unarmed’ comment in the same sentence as the ‘joe biden’ comment made me wonder if Donohoe was upset by how the Blackwater guards were treated by the US government.

    Also wonder if Donohoe had time to pay a visit to his former employer. Looks like Academi has, among other locations, an Arlington, VA building due north of the U.S. Marine War Memorial and due west of Theodore Roosevelt Island.

  8. subtropolis says:

    “Nordean was supposed to be in charge, but he was AWOL for several hours leading up to 9PM (rather interesting hours on January 5 to be unreachable).”

    Perhaps he was meeting with people up the conspiracy chain, and had been made to leave his device inside the refrigerator.

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