Household raises cash on-line for ‘distinctive’ son charged in Jan. 6 riot – Atlanta Journal Structure

A Milton teenager charged with among the most severe crimes within the Jan. 6 U.S. Capitol riot is elevating cash for his protection on a Christian fundraising platform that has develop into a house for accused Capitol rioters.
The account for Bruno Cua, 19, on the fundraising web site GiveSendGo has raised greater than $20,000 from dozens of donors, a few of whom check with Cua as a patriot or a persecuted Christian. Others repeat conspiracy theories or ask for fees to be dropped based mostly on discredited claims that Cua and others arrested within the Jan. 6 assaults had been arrange by the federal government.
“Pleased with you, Bruno!” one nameless donor wrote. “Thanks for being an excellent patriot! We stand with you.”
“Sustain the Good battle of Religion. God continues to be on the throne,” one other wrote.
In household updates on the location, Cua is described as an “distinctive” teenager and religious Christian who “was caught up within the frenzy of mob mentality” on Jan. 6 and now speaks to youth teams “in regards to the risks of social media, making impulsive selections and listening to 1’s mother and father.”

Cua faces greater than a dozen prison fees, together with assaulting a police officer and carrying a lethal weapon into the Capitol. Cua is the youngest defendant to be charged within the pro-Trump riot and he is among the relative handful of accused insurrectionists to make it onto the ground of the Senate.
Credit score: USAO/FBI
Credit score: USAO/FBI
Credit score: USAO/FBI
Credit score: USAO/FBI
His journey by way of the Capitol was captured on video by a number of sources, together with a safety digital camera outdoors the Senate chamber that reveals Cua, with what seems to be a steel baton in his proper hand, twice shoving a person recognized by prosecutors as a Capitol Police officer. The officer finally retreats, after which Cua and a number of other others enter the Senate.
In keeping with courtroom information, Cua spent the weeks main as much as the Jan. 6 “Cease the Steal” rally posting to conservative social media web site Parler urging violent opposition to the November 2020 presidential election.
“They know they can’t management us if we’re armed and harmful!” he wrote in a single such put up. “Don’t again down and don’t be discouraged. Present up and be able to battle. This actually is our #1776.”
Cua’s household set a fundraising aim of $350,000, stating they’d “exhausted their sources.” A couple of quarter of the greater than 725 individuals charged within the assault have accepted plea offers, most pleading to much less severe misdemeanor offenses.
Up to now solely six of the 225 defendants charged with assaulting or impeding law enforcement officials through the riot have pleaded responsible. A Nov. 22 household replace stated the plea provide given to Cua “was not acceptable.”
“This implies the battle for Bruno’s freedom continues,” the replace reads.
Cua has been out on bond since he was launched from custody in March, however he has to put on a GPS ankle monitor and has been largely confined to his household’s massive North Fulton house and acreage. In keeping with the GiveSendGo web page, Cua earned his GED since his arrest and has been engaged on house enchancment initiatives for buddies and neighbors whereas ready for his day in courtroom.
If the case goes to trial, Cua faces the potential of a decade or extra behind bars. In a listening to final week, prosecutors stated they’re nonetheless discussing a attainable plea with Cua, however they gave no indication of progress.
GiveSendGo, which didn’t reply to a request for remark for this report, describes itself as a “place to work along with the physique of Christ world wide to make a distinction,” nevertheless it’s develop into a big supply of cash for Jan. 6 defendants. In keeping with a current investigation by The Guardian newspaper, defendants have raised greater than $2 million on the location.
Melanie Vaughn-West, pastor at Oakhurst Baptist Church in Decatur, stated pairing of Christianity with the Jan. 6 riot is one other troubling instance of what critics decry as “Christian Nationalism,” or the concept that america is a particularly Christian nation and that the federal government ought to replicate that relatively than observe the Constitutional separation of church and state.
The idea of Christian Nationalism is antithetical to the teachings of Jesus Christ, Vaughn-West stated. Jesus espoused nonviolence and an acceptance of all peoples, even whereas residing beneath the oppressive rule of the Roman Empire, she stated.
“It’s very regarding. I feel we’ve one way or the other taken the best way of Jesus and what Jesus was speaking about and connecting it to one thing that’s the reverse of what Jesus stood for,” she stated.
No trial date has been set for Cua. He’s certainly one of 17 defendants from Georgia to have been charged within the Jan. 6 riot.

Concerning the Writer

Joyner is a member of the AJC Investigations group. He has been with the AJC since 2010.