It’s good to have friends in high places.
Federal prosecutors on Friday highlighted a nexus between a top intelligence official in D.C.’s Metropolitan Police Department and Proud Boys leader Enrique Tarrio, a relationship which continued from July 2019 through the Jan. 6 insurrection.
Former Metropolitan Police Department officer Shane Lamond, who supervised the intelligence branch of the department’s homeland security bureau, faces four counts stemming from allegations that he fed information to Tarrio about law enforcement investigations into him and then lied about it to federal agents.
An attorney for Lamond didn’t immediately return our request for comment. But the indictment lays out multiple situations in which Lamond allegedly initiated contact with Tarrio, feeding him sensitive information about investigations into the Proud Boys and Tarrio specifically.
At times, Lamond apparently suggests that he sympathizes with Tarrio politically.
After the November 2020 election was called, Lamond allegedly wrote to Tarrio saying, “Hey brother, sad, sad news today. You all planning anything?”
“Yep,” Tarrio replied.
One hour later, Lamond allegedly wrote to Tarrio that the pair should switch to an encrypted messaging app because social media accounts “belonging to your people are talking about mobilizing and ‘taking back the country.'”
Lamond was put on leave in February 2022 due to suspicions over his ties to the Proud Boys. At the time, Tarrio told reporters that Lamont would tell the group where counterprotestors were staging.
But at Tarrio’s seditious conspiracy trial this year, defense attorneys for the Proud Boys chief revealed several of the texts between the two as part of an effort to show that the group was cooperating with — and not attempting to overthrow — governmental authority.
That’s the nightmare fuel which permeates the texts, however: the prospect of polarized law enforcement officers siding with a violent right-wing street mob.
Texts released in the Friday indictment suggest that Lamond portrayed his relationship with Tarrio to his superiors as that of “source” and handler. But at times, he tried to downplay the prospect of violence from the Proud Boys.
At a December 2020 protest, Tarrio burned a Black Lives Matter flag belonging to a local church.
That sparked a D.C. police investigation into which Lamond could purportedly see — and about which he allegedly fed information to Tarrio.
After the Proud Boys leader asked if they would “make a stink of it,” Lamond allegedly replied that he told the department’s criminal investigation division that the Proud Boys group was “made up of a lot of Latinos and Blacks so not a racist thing.”
“If anything I said its political but then I drew attention to the Trump and American flags that were taken by Antifa and set on fire,” he purportedly wrote. “I said all those would have to be classified as hate crimes too.”
Prosecutors say that Lamond went on to provide critical details about the investigation to Tarrio, including what evidence investigators had gathered tying Tarrio to the burning, when a charging decision was to be made and, critically, that a warrant for Tarrio’s arrest had been issued.
Lamond faces one count of obstruction for those allegations. He faces three additional counts of false statements for allegedly lying to federal investigators about his interactions with Tarrio.
The relationship purportedly continued through January 6. Lamond allegedly continued to feed Tarrio information, post-indictment, about federal investigations into the Proud Boys after the insurrection.
On January 7, Tarrio channeled his bravado to tell Lamond that he “could have stopped this whole thing.”
Lamond replied that he thought the crowd had gone beyond anyone’s control, and that it was a problem when Alex Jones “was the voice of reason.” Lamond added that he had looked into Tarrio’s charges, and said that possession of high capacity ammo magazines in D.C. was a felony.
“So gay,” Tarrio replied.
Read the indictment here: