During sworn testimony, defendant Elizabeth Renee Richter testified that Ngo is not a journalist, but rather a "voyeur" that is known "to work with Nazi's and white nationalists." Richter is accused of broadcasting video showing Andy Ngo trying to hide from his assailants on May 28, 2021, and verbally encouraging more assaults.
Richter said that she first became aware of Ngo between 2017 and 2018 but grew to dislike him after he had reported on the death of Sean Kealiher, an alleged member of Rose City Antifa who had urged fellow comrades to commit violent terrorist acts and led training sessions to radicalize other youth. Kealiher was killed by a vehicle in 2019 after that car had reportedly been fired upon. Richter said that Kealiher was “her friend’s son” and alleged that Ngo had lied about his death, claiming that Kealiher was "brutally murdered."
Richter, who described herself as an introverted single mother that provides "community aid" to alleged criminals that have been recently released from jail, attacked Ngo’s reputation as a journalist and accused him of “not putting in the effort” to “report facts.”
The defendant claimed that while attending protests she would "report on situations with the truth" and then would see Andy’s reporting of the same events which she claims consisted of "lies that were inflammatory."
An example that Richter provided regarding Ngo's reporting included his coverage of the infamous 2020 riots in Portland, Oregon, in which Antifa and far-left rioters had violently sieged the federal courthouse. These riots went on for more than 100 consecutive days while rioters attempted set fire to the federal building.
Richter didn't like that Ngo would report on those who had been arrested and charged with riot-related crimes.
"There was a time in 2020 when large groups of people would be out protesting," Richter said, going on to say that Ngo would report on those who had been arrested, reporting that included the mugshots of who had been arrested.
Richter criticized Ngo's reporting on those who had been arrested by saying that charges against many of those people had been “dismissed," or that they weren’t criminally convicted. For Richter, this means they should not have been reported on in the first place.
In addition, Richter testified that Ngo would report that “Antifa” had been “burning the city” and would then post mugshots labeling those arrested as “Antifa,” which she sternly stated to the jury “stands for anti-fascist."
When asked about Ngo’s reputation, Richter testified that she knows him to be “a dangerous person” that “lies and inflates things about people.” She also claimed, without evidence, that Ngo “helped provide a list of names to a literal Neo-Nazi.” The defendant testified that Ngo routinely “doxes” people in his reporting and lies about them.
After Richter had described to the jury who she believed Andy Ngo to be, the defendant gave testimony about The Nines Hotel incident, in which Ngo was brutally attacked by a mob of black bloc-clad Antifa before seeking refuge inside the hotel. Richter is accused of approaching Ngo, broadcasting his location via livestream, and verbally encouraging additional assaults, according to the complaint.
Video evidence shows Richter entering The Nines Hotel and confronting Ngo while she was livestreaming as he hid behind a counter to escape the violent mob of Antifa that had just physically beaten him. She is allegedly heard on video screaming “I can’t wait for you to come out, Andy!” and “You thought the milkshakes were bad last time! We are going to beat the f*ck out of you b*tch!”
Before Ngo was brutally beaten that night, he was covering a direct action hosted by Antifa and other far-left groups in celebration of “one year of riots.” Ngo had concealed his identity that night over concerns surrounding his safety, he testified.
Regarding Ngo’s testimony that he had been approached by both defendants, Richter and Hacker, before he was beaten, Richter testified that she approached Ngo and speculated that it was him “because when I had identified him twice prior over the years, he had worn similar things.”
The defendant said that she had also spoken to Hacker that night, who had testified that he had told journalist Sergio Olmos that he thought the individual concealing his identity was Andy Ngo. Richter said that she did not speak to Ngo or tell anyone that it was him.
Richter testified that she recalled “a handful of different times people saying, ‘is that Andy’ amongst themselves.”
Richter testified that she was wearing a black hoodie and black pants that night because it was her “normal attire.” She said that she was not involved in the physical beatings against Ngo, did anything to help the individuals that had beaten him, nor did she witness them, according to her testimony.
On why she decided to enter the hotel after Ngo had been beaten, Richter said a “reporter had told us Andy was in there and I went to see for myself.”
Regarding the tweets she had allegedly made that night that were submitted into evidence, in which Richter is accused of doxing and thanking people for identifying Ngo, Richter testified that she has always made posts about “public figures, officials, and celebrities” that come to the city, stating that “public figures can’t be doxed” because they don’t fit the criteria.
She admitted that the tweets were posted from her account but doesn’t recall writing them. Screenshots of Richter’s Twitter that were shown to the jury and submitted evidence include:
"Folks are chasing down who they suspect is Andy Ngo. In the area by Pioneer."
"Andy Ngo running up 5th and Morrison."
"When Andy ran in the hotel I ran in with him and pretended I was getting chased lol"
"Folks are saying there's a chance Andy Ngo has been moved to the hospital."
"Andy was discovered by one of our comrades who's a f*cking badass while Andy was in full bloc fyi. It had nothing to do with his facial appearance we couldn't see his face."
Richter made an additional reference to The Nines Hotel incident on May 28 of this year, writing on Twitter, "Happy day to all that celebrate" with an attached photo of Ngo crouched down in fear, according to testimony.
Regarding the identity of the “comrade” that Richter was referring to in the tweet that said, “Andy was discovered by one of our comrades who's a f*cking badass,” Richter testified that she does not recall the identity of the comrade that she had referenced.
On why she continued to livestream after hotel security had forced her out of the building, Richter testified that she was trying “to find more fascists” since Ngo was there and was trying “to get the truth out there.”
During cross examination, Ngo’s team explained to Richter that the defense team has not provided evidence for any of her accusations against Ngo, which include accusing him of providing "kill lists" to "Nazis."
As Richter was testifying, there were multiple disruptions in the courtroom over safety concerns, causing Judge Sinlapasai to order a recess. The disruption was one of many that has occurred during the trial this week, in which the judge has warned she could hold the disrupters in contempt of court.
Catch up on the previous days of the trial here, here, and here.
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