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DAO Election Task Force Files Motion to Revoke Bail on Joshua Macias

PHILADELPHIA (March 17, 2022) – The District Attorney’s Office Election Task Force has filed a motion in the Court of Common Pleas to revoke bail on defendant Joshua Macias, who was arrested shortly after the 2020 presidential election, outside of the Pennsylvania Convention Center as votes were being canvassed.

Macias and his co-defendant and co-conspirator, Antonio Lamotta, were arrested by Philadelphia Police after an FBI alert was issued about them regarding a possible attempt to interfere with the counting of votes. Both were illegally armed when they were stopped by Philly officers, and officers later recovered from the Hummer they drove from Virginia a semi-automatic AR-15-style assault rifle, 2 AR-15 charging handles, 117 .223 rifle cartridges, 44 .40 caliber cartridges, one .45 caliber cartridge, one 9mm cartridge, and a samurai sword.

Macias was charged with two Violations of the Uniform Firearms Act, Attempted Interference with Primaries and Elections, Hindering the Performance of a Duty, and Criminal Conspiracy.

After Macias and Lamotta were seen participating in the violent January 6, 2021, insurrection at the U.S. Capitol, the DAO Election Task Force filed a motion asking the court to revoke their bail. At the conclusion of a hearing on January 22, 2021, the Court denied the Commonwealth’s motion but increased Macias’ bail to $850,000. Macias was briefly incarcerated before posting 10% of the bail amount to secure his release.

The court also set additional conditions on Macias, including instructions not to post on social media or attend any further rallies. Since then, Macias has continued to disregard the court’s instructions and violate the terms of his pre-trial release by posting on social media, participating in events with political extremists — including an individual who has publicly called for the execution of everyone involved in President Biden’s election — and by using social media platforms to organize an “American trucker protest,” modeled after a recent illegal occupation that effectively shut down downtown Ottawa, Canada, for three weeks.

District Attorney Larry Krasner said Macias’ disregard for the court’s instructions and participation in dangerous anti-democratic activities such as the January 6 insurrection underscore the shortcomings of the cash bail system and law enforcement’s duty to vigorously investigate and prosecute threats of political violence.

“This defendant has both demonstrated his disregard for criminal law and for the sacred principles undergirding our democracy,” District Attorney Krasner said. “As my office prepares to try Joshua Macias for his attempt to interfere, perhaps violently, in the counting of votes in the 2020 presidential election, we must have a reasonable expectation that he will actually show up for his upcoming trial in Philadelphia. Macias’ flagrant disregard for the very minimal and reasonable conditions placed on him by the court for release pre-trial indicates that he is both a flight risk and an ongoing threat to peaceful and fair democratic elections. We respectfully ask the court to revoke his bail as soon as possible.”

The Commonwealth’s motion to revoke Joshua Macias’ bail can be found here. A hearing on this motion has been scheduled for Wednesday, March 30th.

CONTACT:  Jane Roh, 215-686-8711, [email protected]

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The Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office is the largest prosecutor’s office in Pennsylvania, and one of the largest in the nation. It serves the more than 1.5 million residents of the City and County of Philadelphia, employing 600 lawyers, detectives, and support staff. The District Attorney’s Office is responsible for the prosecution of approximately 40,000 criminal cases annually. Learn more about the DAO by visiting PhillyDA.org.