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Teen tips FBI of father’s involvement in Capitol siege

Jackson Reffitt reported to the FBI even after his father threatened to shoot him if he did.

Capitol Xinhua News Agency/Getty Images

A rioter’s participation in the Capitol insurrection has cost him his relationship with his son. Jackson Reffitt told the FBI that his father, Guy Reffitt, was involved in the riots and then proceeded to cut ties with him.

As ABC News reported, Jackson first contacted the FBI weeks before the siege as he was wary of his father’s recent behavior. “At first, he was talking down to anyone against his opinion. For example, he would say that liberals wouldn’t survive in this world,” he explained. “I didn’t know what he was doing online, but I’ve heard what he’s been talking about — he’s been hyping something up. I had no idea what it was, and I’d rather contact authorities than know what was going to happen.”

During the riots, Jackson revealed, Guy boasted about his presence there, later informing family members that he only went to help protect the country and document the moments on his camera. When he discovered that FBI agents were in search of involved individuals, he shared his intentions to “erase everything” and threatened his kids, stating, “If you turn me in, you’re a traitor, and you know what happens to traitors...traitors get shot.”

Jackson — who has reportedly been in hiding since — told law enforcement that he thought his father’s statements were a threat to his life though he doesn’t really believe he would actually harm him.

“I think the way he’s been manipulated into thinking by these extremist groups and what’s been fed to him was worrying enough that I don’t know what he was going to do next,” he told ABC News.

Jackson is now encouraging more people with information about rioters to speak out. “I want people to know how awful this political strain can be on certain people,” he said. “And I feel like I should have to have the voice to tell people that it’s OK to come forward. Your moral compass is going to be absolutely just the right thing.”

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