The lead guitarist and founder of American heavy metal band Iced Earth is among those wanted by police for storming the US Capitol yesterday (January 6).
Jon Schaffer was photographed among the rioters who breached security at the Capitol and, in one image captured by AFP’s Roberto Schmidt, appeared to be wildly gesticulating in the middle of the chaotic scenes.
Now, Schaffer has appeared on a PowerPoint presentation from the Metropolitan Police in D.C., which documents people sought after for “unrest-related offences” and the unlawful entry of Capitol grounds.
Schaffer’s involvement in the Capitol riot came a few months after he attended a D.C. Trump rally in November to protest against the election results.
“A group of thugs and criminals hijacked this country a long time ago,” he told German daily newspaper Die Welt at the time. “Now they’re making their big move, and it’s not gonna happen. And that’s what it is.
“They will go down. They’re messing with the wrong people, believe me.”
Iced Earth vocalist Stu Block appeared to respond to his bandmate’s much-publicised involvement in this week’s Capitol riot with the below Instagram image on Wednesday, which he captioned “nuff said #love”.
Comments on the post have subsequently been turned off by Block, but Blabbermouth reports that a number of his followers were upset by Schaffer’s involvement in the riot.
“I unfortunately can no longer support the band you are in. Much love and respect for you as a person and a great singer but Jon no longer gets a dime from me,” one commenter wrote. “I will follow and support you in all future endeavours. I hope Jon realises that being self-centred and ideological does not just affect him but his extended family. God Bless you and your family.”
Block reportedly responded: “T[h]is is your decision and how you feel and I must absolutely respect that.”
Schaffer previously attracted controversy in July when he claimed that Covid-19 is “a psychological warfare campaign on the people more than it is a serious pandemic”.
He told MetalSucks: “I think there’s a lot more going on than meets the eye here — in fact, I know there is. Legitimate doctors and scientists are being censored and banned on YouTube constantly. It’s unbelievable levels of fraud.”