Two Men Were Arrested For Carrying Weapons Near A Philadelphia Vote-Counting Site

One of the suspects is a cofounder of the group "Veterans for Donald Trump."

Philadelphia prosecutors have charged two Virginia men with weapons violations after they were arrested Thursday night for carrying firearms near the city's convention center, where votes are being counted.

In a statement Friday, Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner said that Joshua Macias, 42, and Antonio LaMotta, 61, both of Chesapeake, Virginia, faced charges of carrying concealed firearms without a license, a third-degree felony, and carrying firearms on public streets or public property, a first-degree misdemeanor.

"Police had earlier received information [from the FBI] that armed individuals in a silver Hummer were heading to Philadelphia, possibly for a reason related to the ongoing canvas of votes," Krasner said in the statement.

In a press conference earlier that day, Philadelphia Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw said that when confronted by law enforcement officers, LaMotta had a 9mm Beretta in a holster and Macias had a .40-caliber Beretta handgun inside his jacket. After the men were placed under arrest, authorities found an AR-style rifle and ammunition inside the Hummer.

Krasner said he was considering additional charges against the two men, including "possibly a criminal offense under the election code." He made it clear that the investigation was ongoing and more charges could follow but emphasized that the arrests appeared to be isolated incidents.

"At this time, we do not have indications that the story is bigger than these two individuals," he said.

Macias is a cofounder of the group "Veterans for Donald Trump," although he is no longer associated with the organization, having left its leadership team in August due to "personal family issues." He has personally met the president at least once.

Here is the current homepage for Vets for Trump -->

At 10:27 a.m. on Thursday, Macias tweeted that he and other veterans would be mobilizing to "poll watch" and "ensure there is integrity in our election."

@ThyConsigliori .We are mobilizing accross the country now #Veterans

The other suspect, LaMotta, is a self-described "security contractor."

Social media posts indicate that he is the owner of the Hummer. A bumper sticker on the vehicle and items found within it indicate that LaMotta is a believer in QAnon, the collective delusion that alleges Trump is fighting a "deep state" cabal of satanists who sexually abuse children.

In an MSNBC interview Friday night, Krasner said that the suspects began their drive from Virginia to Pennsylvania "after the speech by the president."

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