Robyn Sweet was at all times near her dad, Doug, rising up in Virginia. As a child, she thought-about him her “rock.” Her dad’s profession on the shipyards close to his house ended again within the early Nineties when he was injured on the job. Sweet’s dad and mom divorced, and Doug works as a handyman on the town.
Sweet mentioned she would not keep in mind rising up with politics, however issues modified when her father started to attend rallies.
“When Charlottesville occurred,” Sweet instructed CBS News’ Ben Tracy, “my dad was there.”
During the 2017 white supremacist rally “Unite The Right,” Sweet mentioned her father absolutely embraced former President Trump’s rhetoric about defending Confederate heritage. It was there she mentioned that he discovered a brand new house in far-right politics, a lot of it on-line.
“We could not have an everyday dialog. It would simply go proper down this rabbit gap like, ‘They’re taking youngsters and draining their blood to make adrenochrome,’” she mentioned.
Adrenochrome is a chemical compound produced by the oxidation of adrenaline. It’s additionally turn into an ingredient within the baseless on-line conspiracy concept often called QAnon.
Simultaneously, Robyn was devoting herself to racial justice points, marching final summer time with Black Lives Matter.
Then on January 6, as Americans watched as rioters broke into the U.S. Capitol, Sweet puzzled if her father was among the many flood of rioters.
“My very first thought was, ‘I guess my dad is there.’ I used to be afraid for him. I had individuals examine his Facebook. He hadn’t posted something,” she mentioned. “Then I obtained actually scared, and any individual despatched me a information report that listed him as arrested.”
Sweet is amongst no less than 238 individuals charged for his or her alleged roles within the riot. Federal prosecutors opened over 400 investigations into doable criminals stemming from the Capitol assault.
Sweet comes from Mathews, Virginia, a seaside city of 9,000 individuals. Some residents mentioned that extremist and infrequently racist views as soon as hidden have been on full show lately.
“The attitudes and the concepts and the motivations that drove individuals to the Capitol have been effervescent underneath the floor right here since I used to be a child,” Shawn Cosby mentioned.
“How a lot of it do you suppose has been a response to what occurred final summer time with protests for racial justice?” Tracy requested.
“I believe that is loads of it. I believe the underside line is you could have lots of people who’re extremely afraid. And they can not articulate, they do not know methods to categorical it,” Cosby mentioned.
Sweet wasn’t the one particular person from Mathews who allegedly participated within the Capitol riots. Federal prosecutors charged Cindy Fitchett for unlawfully coming into the Capitol. Both Sweet and Fitchett have pleaded not responsible.
Shortly after Sweet was arrested, he mentioned that he did not go along with any malice or intention of malice. He declined CBS News’ request for an interview and is scheduled to look in court docket in March.
House prosecutors used Sweet’s personal phrases during former President Trump’s impeachment trial.
Sweet was quoted as saying that he confirmed up on January 6 as a result of Mr. Trump had instructed his so-called “digital troopers” to be there.
Robyn mentioned she noticed her dad lately, and she or he is hopeful they will mend their relationship.
“At the top of the day, they’re your loved ones. I really feel like he actually has been virtually form of brainwashed in a manner,” Sweet mentioned.
“You clearly nonetheless love him,” Tracy requested.
“Oh, completely, yeah,” she mentioned.
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