According to The Washington Post, Kokesh was in possession of hallucinogenic mushrooms – a Schedule I narcotic – at his suburban Washington D.C. home. Kokesh faces up to 10 years in prison and a maximum of $2,500 if convicted of the possession charges. He also faces an additional 2+ years in jail if convicted of having both a firearm and the drugs simultaneously.
Last week Kokesh, a former marine, uploaded a YouTube video of himself loading a shotgun in downtown D.C., where carrying loaded weapons is prohibited by law.
“We will not be silent. We will not obey,” Kokesh says in his video, “Open Carry march on DC a success.” “We will not allow our government to destroy our humanity. We are the final American Revolution. See you next Independence Day.”
Kokesh originally planned to lead an armed “Open Carry March” into the District on July 4, but cancelled the event shortly afterwards after district police announced they would arrest anyone carrying a loaded weapon into the district.
A press release posted on Kokesh’s website noted that more than 20 SWAT team members surrounded his house as police and low-flying helicopters barricaded his street. The authorities used a battering ram to knock in Kokesh’s door, detonated a flash bang grenade in the front hallway and handcuffed Kokesh and several of his roommates during the five-hour raid.
A spokeswoman for the U.S. Park Police acknowledged that the raid was done in search of a weapon, however she would not confirm whether that was the weapon used in the YouTube video or not.
“We were expecting this. We were expecting the government to raid our house,” Darrell Young, Kokesh’s roommate, told NBC Washington.
Kokesh had told NBC Washington earlier in the day that his actions in the video were intentional and that he doesn’t believe it makes sense that Americans can carry a gun on one side of the Potomac river and not the other.
“I was ready to stand by my word, and I was ready to commit the civil disobedience that I had committed to,” he said.
Kokesh was held overnight at the Fairfax Count Adult Detention Center and is set to be arraigned on Thursday. A preliminary hearing has been set for October 2.