The North Carolina Republic Party is condemning anyone who refuses to comply with an investigation into the October 2016 firebombing of a GOP office in Orange County.
The NCGOP doesn’t name any names, but the statement comes as activist and anarchist Katie Yow is publicly refusing to testify before a federal grand jury said to be investigating that very thing. The statement links to an article about Yow from the Raleigh-based American Lens.
In a statement, the NCGOP says anyone defying a grand jury subpoena should be jailed until they comply. Yow was subpoenaed to testify before a grand jury in Greensboro but says she “will never comply with this or any subpoena” despite the possibility of jail time if she is held in contempt of court.
“This was not just an attack on Orange County, it was an attack on democracy,” said Waddy Davis, Orange County GOP Chairman. “Refusing to comply with a lawful order to appear before an investigative Grand Jury, and encouraging others with critical information to do the same, is giving aid and comfort to the political terrorists who committed these crimes.”
NCGOP Chairman Robin Hayes urged anyone with information to speak up:
“The NCGOP absolutely condemns anyone refusing to cooperate with investigators regarding the political terrorist firebombing of the Orange County GOP office. The person or persons responsible must be held accountable for their crime. It is inappropriate to discuss the actions of a Federal Grand Jury, and anybody who refuses to comply with a lawful subpoena in this case should be incarcerated until they do. Terrorism against our political institutions can not stand. The state is offering the $5,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for the firebombing, which the NCGOP will match with an additional 5,000. If anyone has additional information about the case, now is the time to speak up. Throughout this process we have continually been impressed with the dedication and professionalism of local, state and federal law enforcement authorities. We can’t thank them enough for their service.”
Yow says she doesn’t know “anything relevant to a criminal investigation of the alleged incident at the GOP headquarters.”
“The broad nature of the government’s interest in other information makes clear the way that this and other grand juries are used as fishing expeditions to attempt to coerce testimony on 1st amendment protected information,” Yow said in a statement. “This is one of the many ways grand juries are used to repress social movements, and one of many reasons why we resist them.”
By refusing to comply with the grand jury, Yow risks being held in contempt of court and jailed for the life of the grand jury, which could be up to eighteen months. She appeared before the grand jury in Greensboro on Monday and says she was informed that the U.S. Attorney’s Office will be asking a judge to hold her in civil contempt.