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January 18, 2018

Militia Trial – The Book of Armaments, Chapter Three

I rushed in to the court house on Day 3 of the trial of Schaeffer Cox, Coleman Barney, and Lonnie Vernon, and did the security drill. I passed the first checkpoint, but the second screening caused the security man to say, “Do you have any batteries in there?” Asking me if I have any batteries in my bag is like asking me if there’s a loose button in my house. I’m sure there must be, but I cannot verify it for sure, or tell you exactly where it is… And so the rifling through my giant saddle bag began – sunglasses, keys, power cord, phone, wallet, a giant tub of gum that spilled all over the bottom of my bag, receipts, feminine hygiene products (that’s always fun), makeup and… batteries!

By the time I finally got to the courtroom, I was just in time to see the jurors filing out for a recess – all except for one.  This juror, it turns out, may have a negative association with the FBI. She told the story of house sitting for a friend who was busted by the FBI. And, the bust she was talking about was no ordinary FBI bust. This was the infamous Rockwood case, which Alaskans may remember as one of the most bizarre in recent memory – where Paul Rockwood and his wife Nadia, way out in the tiny, remote Alaskan village of King Salmon were arrested on charges of terrorism – real, full-fledged terrorism.

The plea agreements state that Rockwood, 35, had become an adherent of extremist Islam who had prepared a list of assassination targets, including U.S. service members. And, though no plot to carry out the killings was revealed, he had researched methods of execution, including guns and explosives, the agreements say.

Federal charging papers said his wife, 36, who is five months pregnant with the couple’s second child, lied to investigators when she denied knowing that an envelope she took to Anchorage in April at her husband’s request contained a list of 15 intended targets. (None were in Alaska.) She told FBI agents that she thought the envelope contained a letter or a book. She gave it to an unidentified individual who her husband believed shared his radical beliefs, the FBI said.

Nadia knew exactly what was on the list and what it was for, federal authorities said.

The plea agreements the couple signed said Paul Rockwood converted to Islam in late 2001 or early 2002 while living in Virginia and became a follower of radical U.S.-born Muslim cleric Anwar Awlaki, now believed to be living in Yemen.

I know, right? It’s worth reading the whole article linked above.

The judge asked her if he thought she could be fair, and if she thought that this experience would affect her ability to be impartial. After the witness told her story, she was excused from the courtroom. That’s when prosecutor Steven Skrocki piped up.

The Rockwood case was a pretty high-profile case, he told the judge who is on loan from Tacoma. They were charged with terrorism. They had a hit list of names, and were intercepted on the way back to Anchorage from King Salmon “to act on that list.” It also involved an undercover informant, and was in many ways similar to this case. Mr. Rockwood calls himself a martyr and a victim. He is extremely vocal to anyone who will listen about his opinion regarding the FBI.

(What are the odds that this witness house sat for the Rockwoods three times? Or that her sister did too – five times! Or that she knows he’s in prison in Alabama, and his wife is back in England with their children, living with a relative. Or that the witness has corresponded with him by mail, and got a letter from him this past December? OR that the prosecutor questioning the witness, Steven E. Skrocki, also happened to be a prosecutor on the Rockwood case!? Strange indeed.)

~Steven Skrocki and Judge Bryan

Skrocki tells us that Paul Rockwood is pretty unhappy with the FBI, and will chew anyone’s ear off about it who is willing to listen. He considers himself a victim, and a martyr, and not only doesn’t like the FBI, he doesn’t like Skrocki himself. “I ’m no friend of Nadia Rockwood and her husband,” he said. “We need to strike [the juror].”

The three defense attorneys had no problem with the witness at all, as you might imagine. “She volunteered the information. That’s a good sign,” said Cox’s attorney Nelson Traverso. “The Government had the opportunity to ask questions earlier, and we didn’t hear anything from her that would indicate she’d be biased,” said Barney’s attorney Timothy Dooley. “She told the court she could be fair,” Vernon’s attorney MJ Hayden said, shrugging.

Then it went to Judge Bryan to make the call. He stated flatly that the challenge to the juror was denied. He was satisfied that she could be fair. He said he would not expect the juror to be opposed to, or in favor of the FBI, from her own statements.” Any bias she may harbor or hide is purely speculative in my view,” he said.

And so the juror remained.

Time for the next witness – another Special Agent from the FBI – Agent Jolene Goeden.

She was involved with the evidence found in Coleman Barney’s utility trailer that they all talked about in opening statements. That thing was packed with armaments of all shapes and sized, and each item had to be gone over in detail before it could be entered into evidence. Each item was assigned a number, and first shown to the Agent and the defense attorneys to make sure they all agreed what they were looking at, and that nobody had any objections. Then they would show the image on a big screen to the jury, and explain in detail what the items were. Most of the time, the item itself was fetched from the giant ammo dump that was the evidence table. The FBI agent would confirm that the item she was holding was the one from the trailer, and the same one as in the photo. Each item went through this process before being entered into evidence. And then on to the next one…

It was an exhaustive and repetitive cycle for each piece of evidence.

~Steven Skrocki and Agent Goeden

First, a green canvas bag with 10 magazines. Agent Goeden pulled out two of them to show the jury. They appear to fit in the stem she had on the counter. There are rounds in plastic bags that came from the magazines. Next is some kind of manual, dated 1942, about 9mm ammunition and guns, a metal box with ammo for a 9mm luger automatic pistol, and finally, a box full of ammunition. All items were found in the trailer.

Coleman Barney’s attorney, Mr. Dooley, objected and said he’d like to approach the bench to tell his objection to the judge directly. ” I don’t do sidebars,” said the judge. And so no sidebar was done.

Dooley pointed out that the the JB Weld, that was balanced on the corner of a box with munitions in it, was actually “found elsewhere than in the box, correct?” Agent Goeden said she didn’t know if it was in the box and said it might just have been in close proximity to the box.  Inside the box were CS canisters, 2 grenade bodies and fuses. “Do you think the JB Weld was put on the box by someone on your team for purposes of photography?”  The Agent said yes.  “With that understanding I’ll waive the objection,” Dooley stated.

The next image was a close-ups of grenades and  fuses. The prosecutor pointed out the ridge line on both grenade bodies, how one grenade looked different than the others, and how there had been grinding of metal in one place.

Judge Bryan objected to them being called “grenades.” They are “shells” or “grenade bodies,” he noted. Then came a picture of 17 bodies that appear to have fuses. One is pineapple-like…

Next what looked like an old white, square, kitty litter bucket, or salt bucket ,with a handle, and full of stuff. A green bull’s eye and a sideways pine tree shape were sprayed on the sides. The clerk gave Agent Goeden a pair of rubber gloves, which she put on. She removed a couple grenade bodies from the bucket, and showed the jury the holes in the bottom. There are 15 in the bucket – two grenades plus two fuses went to the lab. All the ones in the bucket have fuses on them. All have pins in the fuse.

Then the two grenades that went to the lab are brought out, unwrapped, examined and identified. They too are put into evidence.  Then, they went through the same drill, only with the fuses that got sent to the lab.

I sat and thought that preparation for this trial would have been heaven for an OCD gun enthusiast.

Cox was wearing a white and green plaid shirt and grey jacket. No pink tie today.  Lonnie Vernon was in the same bue shirt unbuttoned to reveal a white t-shirt underneath. Coleman Barney was snappy in a dark suit. He’s the only one I’m sure has family in the audience.

Next are two plastic bags of powder – “Uniqe Smokeless Powder,” says one, and “Hodgdon Rifle Powder” says the other.

I noticed for the second or third time, that Cox looks miffed at his attorney. Maybe not at him, but to him. He is whispering forcefully, leaning in close and looking very unhappy. It’s amazing how different his face can look between “newsboy,” and “get-out-of-his-way.”

Next up, a  37mm launcher, OC cartridges,and  2 hornets nests.  The jury seems to be paying fairly close attention and taking notes.

`The launcher looked like this

Mention is made that unlike some of the other evidence, they “can’t bring the contents of this particular picture into the courtroom.” Fine with me. The picture shows 28 OC canisters, 8 CS canisters, and 4 hornets nests.

~The CS canisters looked a lot like this

Then a 223 caliber. There were holes in the stock – top and bottom.

Exhibit after exhibit followed. Exhibit 351 was more ammunition, there were boxes of 223 caliber, and written on one of them was the name “Cox”. The prosecution indicated it was six boxes, and a total of 1200 rounds. Mr. Dooley said it only looked like five. They zoomed in to show the tippy edge of the sixth box underneath one of the others.

Next is a big bunch of links that rounds of ammunition fit into. Another firearm.

Schaeffer Cox is chewing on his “special pen.” Coleman Barney is mostly out of my line of sight.

Next is a picture of a duffel bag that was wrapped in plastic and stored in the trailer. The contents reveal a crank, a tripod, and a semi-automatic sniper rifle. It appeared to be heavy, and it took two prosecutors to haul the duffel bag to the stand so Agent Goden could identify it.  The name on baggage tags said Schaeffer Cox.  She described it – 7.62mm 30 caliber. Cox smiled wistfully at the gun, almost like he couldn’t help himself. If you just saw his face, he looked like a kid who was watching some kind of adorable animal video on YouTube.

Next was a box full of 30 caliber ammunition – 1,000 rounds in boxes of 20. Then a box full of links that hold ammunition together. More ammunition.

Five more photos – Items 346, 347, 348, 350, and 394 all met with no objections and were admitted into evidence. They showed an ammo can with 7.62×39 123gr full metal jacket rounds, another sealed can, 2 magazines – one of which says “Cox.”  3 more ammunition boxes.

Item 362 is a smorgasbord photo – The green bag we saw previously with 10 magazines, a basket tht holds more magazines, ammunition in 4 of them, more magazines on the floor, an ammunition feeder which is loaded, a clip that is consistent the metallic links the agent had, additional magazines, some more ammo boxes, and at least two firearms.

386 was described as “items of identification.” The prosecution displayed the photo for defense counsel first. Judge Bryan and counsel say no objection.

Then up on the screen comes Schaeffer Cox’s Alaska driver’s licence, His Sam’s Club card, his Blockbuster card, a Fred Meyer rewards card, and some kind of sportsmen’s store card, I think. Skrocki, the prosecutor, asked Agent Goden if something appeared embossed on the driver’s license which she was holding in her hand. She said there was, and read  “Without Prejudice – Non Asumpsit – Sovereign – All Rights Retained Without Recourse.” It was embossed on the license like a credit card, she said. It wasn’t visible in the picture.

Next were some hand-written notes. I typed as fast as I could. I was at a poor angle to see, and the Agent read the list very fast, but I got most of it.

How we Got Here – Exploring forgotten principles

Lincoln and Law

1898 plateau

Czar like rule of force

Federal reserve

Income tax and social engineering

The suppression of juries and grand juries

The new religion

Granting permission

Smothering Capitalism (men, voluntary socialism)

The lie of Democracy

Law is force


The day of reckoning

No more party blaming

Realization of no redress


Complete vulnerability

Total servitude or the rebirth of men


What to do

1) Know who you are and be that person

2) Identify the enmy

3) Declare war

4) Don’t’ go broke

5) Make it cost them

6) Keep your children

7) Do your duty as a voter

8) Do your duty as a juror

9) Make peace with the cost and hold on to hope

10) Identify your allies and support them

11) Appeal to God and never worship Caesar

12) Live as free men and…..(didn’t get it)

13) Be prepared to use force to defend liberty and law

It was a compelling list. This was no “bread, eggs and milk.”  When the Agent read, “Make peace with the cost and hold on to hope,” I wondered what was going through Cox’s mind. I glanced over and he was deep in thought, with his chin resting on his hand, and eyes gazing slightly downward with a far-off look.

Next was a receipt from Far North Tactical, a store in Fairbanks that sells weapons and police items.


Total: $583

Schaeffer A Cox


Then came a picture of a dozen or so large canisters of Tannerite shrinkwrapped together in a stack about 4 feet high.

The next picture was shown to the defense first, as they all had been, but this picture raised an objection from Nelson Traverso. He objected on the grounds of relevance. It was overruled. The item turned out to be a Southord lock picking set. Each end has a different shape, and you put it in the lock to pick it.

Next up was more ammunition, a clip and magazine. Then a paddle-type hand gun holster and a “rail” for a semi-automatic weapon. There was reference to a gas mask the jury had seen earlier, but I wasn’t there yet for that one.

You get the idea of where this is going. They’ll finish up the travel trailer, then they’ll move on to residences, and vehicles searched, and enter each one of the 700 items into evidence.

Before we could get further, the Clerk said she was having problems with the recording and a recess was called. It was about 11:45 when I left.

More as I have time…






18 Responses to “Militia Trial – The Book of Armaments, Chapter Three”
  1. Sourdough Mullet says:

    Is anyone else deeply concerned about this judge’s judgement with regard to not dismissing the personal friend of the Rockwoods as a juror?
    He retained her because she SAID she could be fair and unbiased? Should we also just go ahead and just let Schaeffer Cox go free because he SAYS he is innocent?
    I think this decision is really reckless.

  2. marlys says:

    Thank you AKM. Your intake of details and recap is very impressive, it’s like being there sitting beside a wise& witty friend. Truly gifted.

  3. Mickey says:

    Laingirl there is no legal requirement to show a need for semiautomatic weapons and ammunition. There is a legal requirement to allow ownership and that is the Second Admendment of the Constitution of the United States and Article 1 Section 19 of the Constitution of the State of Alaska.

    It is only when the firearms are used or to be used in the commison of a crime is any legality in question. A peson who has a legal right to own firearms and ammunition has the right to own as many or as much as they want. Much like a person buying a car has the right to buy as large as an engine or vehicle as they want. We may not think they need it but it’s till their right to do so.

    The question is was there a crime committed or about to be committed with them.

    Isn’t it strange how someone who does not want to be a part of this nation or state are so willing to accept it’s protections but not the responsibilites?

  4. LibertyLover says:

    Here’s my question: If this person is claiming to be a sovereign person, unattached to American society (and benefiting from the roads and post office, etc. etc. etc. that American Taxes provide), then what gives him the right to vote or serve as a juror?

    • Motorhead says:

      EXACTLY why I asked the other day why we even waste our “legal system” on him, since he declares he is exempt from all state and Federal laws as a “sovereign citizen.” Just take him over to North Korea and let him be a sovereign citizen there, since he obviously objects our our society of laws. What a hypocrite! from his “list”: “Be prepared to use force to defend liberty and law” — but, Francis, I thought you said our laws don’t apply to you… what law are you prepared to defend with force?”
      AKM: Please keep on the case; your dispatches from the Front are most enlightening. And how telling, your observation of the “Jekyl & Hyde” transformation on Cox’s face, from sweet little “newsboy” to “don’t make me come down there and get you!” Remember how polite pleasant Anthony Hopkins as Hannibal could act just before attacking his prey…

  5. beaglemom says:

    The lock picking set is really intriguing. I guess no one is sovereign except Cox and his buddies.

  6. Zyxomma says:

    As my fellow mudpuppies know, I live in NYC. For most New Yorkers, a magazine is a sheaf of papers with a few staples in the center, or its online version. I love that the label for #8, Do your duty as a juror, came out as 8) especially since this is a trial we’re discussing.

  7. Lynne says:

    Thanks for keeping us posted on this.

  8. merrycricket says:

    Between the trial and the election mess, I am more than entertained this morning. How do you all manage to get it all done? I need coffee just to keep up with it! 😀
    Nice job reporting on the trial. I am learning more than I ever wanted to about weapons.

  9. AKblue says:

    What is Cox’s profession? How can he afford all this stuff?

  10. hedgewytch says:

    Thanks for the blow-by-blow account. Much more interesting and enjoyable to read than the ADN story(s).

    I can’t wait to read about how the defense is going to set this up. Should be rich.

  11. Mo says:

    All that stuff was just for hunting? For the wall of collectible firearms above the mansion fireplace?

    The NRA has a lot to answer for, if this sort of weaponry can be purchased outside the military. And I include the police in the category of civilians who should not be allowed to own stuff like this.

    • laingirl says:

      I agree; there is no legal need for this arsenal. Where do they get the money to buy all of this stuff?

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