TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — In a case arising from anticipated protests at the Florida Capitol last month, a federal grand jury returned an indictment Thursday charging Daniel A. Baker, of Tallahassee, with two counts of transmitting a communication in interstate commerce containing a threat to kidnap or injure.
Lawrence Keefe, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Florida, announced the indictment.
Baker was arrested by FBI agents on January 15 after he issued a “Call to Arms” for like-minded individuals to violently confront protesters gathered at the Florida Capitol in the wake of the January 6 riots at the U.S. Capitol.
He specifically called for others to join him in encircling any protestrrs and confining them at the state Capitol complex using firearms.
“At a time of widespread alarm and turmoil in our nation, and at state capitals in particular, Baker’s actions clearly posed a threat to public order,” U.S. Attorney Keefe said. “Though some media descriptions cast Baker in a sympathetic light, the indictment alleges that he sought to physically stop the expression of political views different than his own, potentially through armed violence. This office and our law enforcement partners are committed to protecting public safety no matter where the threat comes from, and we are confident Baker’s actions will be properly dealt with through the judicial process.”
On January 25, United States Magistrate Judge Michael J. Frank ordered Baker detained pending trial to assure the safety of the community. That order followed a combined preliminary and detention hearing that took place four days earlier.
"The FBI is laser focused on identifying, investigating, and disrupting individuals who are intent on inciting violence or engaging in criminal activity,” said Rachel L. Rojas, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI Jacksonville Division. “We will not tolerate those who seek to wreak havoc in our communities. We are fully coordinating with law enforcement partners to ensure the safety and well-being of all citizens in North Florida, and the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, Leon County Sheriff’s Office and Tallahassee Police Department have been especially vital in this effort. Help from the public is also critical and we encourage anyone with information regarding potential violence or criminal activity to contact law enforcement immediately.”
Baker’s next court appearance has not yet been scheduled. This office will send an update when more information is available.
This indictment is the result of a collaborative investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Florida Department of Law Enforcement, Leon County Sheriff’s Office, and the Tallahassee Police Department. Assistant United States Attorneys Stephen Kunz and Lazaro Fields are prosecuting this case.