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Unrest In America: Over 300 people charged with federal crimes amid nationwide riots

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The U.S. Department of Justice announced Thursday that over 300 individuals in 29 states had been charged with federal crimes in connection to nationwide riots.

The charges range from attempted murder, assaulting a law enforcement officer, arson, burglary of a federally-licensed firearms dealer, damaging federal property, malicious destruction of property using fire or explosives, felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition, unlawful possession of a destructive device, inciting a riot, felony civil disorder, among others, according to the Justice Department.

The Justice Department noted that several individuals allegedly caused damage and destruction of local businesses and others where suspects allegedly violently attacked law enforcement. For example, on June 1 a Boston man shot at least 11 rounds towards officers under the guise of a peaceful protest.

The crimes range in possible jail sentences, however, the more violent and destructive crimes, such as assaulting a police officer could carry charges of up to 20 years. There were 35 suspects charged with assaulting a police officer and the like.

Moreover, 30 suspects were charged with crimes classified as “civil disorder,” some of them using social media sites to organize violence and destruction across the country. Additionally, a number of individuals were charged with burglary and carjacking.

The Justice Department’s announcement comes at a time when racial tensions and attacks on law enforcement are all too common. This week was no exception as rioters took to the streets of several major cities to protest the Grand Jury’s decision in the Breonna Taylor case. Amid the unrest, two Louisville, Kentucky police officers were shot and one suspect is in custody. The two officers are expected to survive.

Earlier this month, Attorney General William Barr explained that some of the violence originates from anarchist groups like Antifa and there’s evidence of their tracks in many of these cities facing the worst of the riots.

“I’ve talked to every police chief in every city where there has been major violence and they all have identified antifa as the ramrod for the violence,” Barr said in an interview with CNN’s Wolf Blitzer. “They are flying around the country. We know people who are flying around the country.”

He continued, “We see some of the purchases they are making before the riots of weapons to use in those riots. So, we are following them.”

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