Aaron Caleb Swenson, 38, was found guilty Thursday of attempting to murder a cop and violating Texas's Hate Crime statute. He was sentenced to 50 years imprisonment for attempted murder, 20 years for making a terroristic threat with a hate crime enhancement, and 10 years for evading arrest. Swenson was charged after driving around Texarkana in body armor while livestreaming his intention to find and kill a cop. He says he had no intention of actually doing it—part of a what might be called a "just LARPing" defense.
Swenson had been the subject of a federal warning notice to area law enforcement months before he allegedly armed himself, dressed in a Hawaiian shirt and body armor and began "hunting the hunters," Crisp said last month at a bond hearing.
Local 911 dispatchers received multiple calls alerting police to the live stream on April 11. Officers searching for Swenson could hear him say he was looking for "red and blue lights" and that he spoke of "finding his prey" as he passed a patrol car on an Interstate 30 access road.
An officer watching the live feed quickly identified the possible make and model of a late Chevy or GMC pickup by the appearance of an image of the vehicle's dashboard on the Facebook Live stream. As Texarkana, Texas, police closed in, Swenson allegedly led them on a high-speed chase. A spike strip was used on Leary Road to deflate one of Swenson's tires but he allegedly continued driving west on U.S. Highway 82 for several miles before finally coming to a stop and placing his hands on the roof of his truck.
As much as I don't care for this asshole, who obviously did plenty of real criming that evening, the leap from "threatening cops while livestreaming" to "convicted of attempted murder and hate crimes and may well spend the rest of his life in jail" is real trouble for everyone else.
Who do we think is going to get prosecuted for this every day, along with the Boogaloo Boy we see prosecuted once a year as a treat?