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May 20, 2022

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Activist connected to Proud Boys arrested for allegedly grabbing Idaho hospital worker


BOISE, Idaho — Far-right activist Kyle “Based Stickman” Chapman, who has a long criminal history and is most known for possessing a leaded stick during a Donald Trump rally in 2017, has been arrested for allegedly grabbing a hospital employee against the worker’s will.

Chapman, 46, was arrested Tuesday by the U.S. Marshall’s Greater Idaho Fugitive Task Force without incident for battery against health care workers, a felony, Boise police spokesperson Haley Williams said. He was being held Wednesday on a $100,000 bail at the Ada County Jail.

In addition, Ada County Judge Joanne Kibodeaux signed a no-contact order, at the request of the prosecutor, restricting Chapman from coming within 500 feet of the alleged victim or Saint Alphonsus Regional Medical Center.

“I know if you look at my record, it does seem bad, but I’m not that person anymore,” Chapman said during Wednesday’s arraignment.

In November 2021, Chapman was a patient at Saint Al’s for a life-threatening pneumonia case, Chapman said during a Wednesday arraignment. During his stay, he allegedly grabbed a hospital employee when the worker went to help Chapman with a medical device, Ada County Deputy Prosecutor Whitney Welsh said during the virtual arraignment.

The medical staffer was not seriously injured.

“The state does believe he poses a danger to the community given his criminal history,” Whitney said Wednesday.

Whitney said Chapman expressed discontent with his treatment over the course of several days and “exhibit(ed) racial and sexist slurs against the hospital employees.”

Police were called to the hospital at 10:30 p.m. Nov. 11 regarding the incident, Williams told the Idaho Statesman. Police opened an investigation and connected Chapman to the incident, Williams said. The report was forwarded to the Ada County Prosecutor’s Office, which issued a warrant for Chapman’s arrest.

Whitney added that Chapman has allegedly contacted the victim at Saint Al’s since reporting the incident, which is why Whitney pushed for the no-contact order.

Chapman said he has had no contact with the witness, aside from one potential incident. It was unclear what incident he was referring to, because the public defender assigned to his case recommend he not speak further on the subject.

The former Bay Area resident is now an Idaho local, Whitney said.

Chapman is under probation until July 17 from a Texas case that was transferred to the Idaho Department of Correction in November 2020, IDOC spokesperson Jeff Ray told the Idaho Statesman in an email.

Chapman became known within the alt-right movement after he was recorded on video beating counterprotesters with a stick weighted with lead during the March 2017 rally in Berkeley, California, that was part of nationwide protests in support of then-President Donald Trump. He later founded the Fraternal Order of the Alt-Knights, or FOAK, which the American Civil Liberties Union classifies as a hate group.

FOAK was created as a paramilitary arm of the far-right Proud Boys. The Proud Boys are classified as a hate group by organizations like the Southern Poverty Law Center and Anti-Defamation League, which say the group espouses xenophobic views, including white nationalism and anti-Semitism. The group describes itself as “Western chauvinists.”

Since FOAK’s formation, Chapman has lost his leadership role, according to multiple media outlets. In November 2020, he attempted to take over the Proud Boys and make it an explicitly white supremacist and anti-Semitic organization, but the coup failed, according to multiple reports.

Chapman’s next court appearance was scheduled for 8:30 a.m. Jan. 20 in the Ada County Magistrate Court.

Chapman has been arrested and convicted numerous times in California and Texas on charges including grand theft, robbery and assault.

He was convicted in Texas in 1993 on a robbery charge. In 2001 he was convicted of grand theft in San Diego County.

He pleaded no contest in 2019 in the leaded-stick incident and was placed on probation until September 2024. A no-contest plea means a defendant isn’t admitting guilt but is accepting the punishment a guilty plea could render.

In April 2017, a month after the stick incident, Chapman was arrested again for allegedly fighting two people in Berkeley while filming a promotional video, according to local media outlet Berkeleyside.

In December 2017, he was pulled over in California for operating a vehicle off-road and for alleged disorderly conduct, which is where officers found that he had a kubotan, a keychain weapon, in violation of the judge’s order in his March rally charges. Chapman’s bail was increased from $135,000 to $400,00 at prosecutors’ request.

Chapman pleaded guilty to the two charges, both misdemeanors, and was sentenced to a year of probation and a $500 fine or community service.

In 2018, Chapman pleaded guilty in Texas to aggravated assault after a bar fight in Austin in July 2017, according to SF Gate. Chapman visited the Lone Star state to attend a “Texans for American Freedom” rally. He was sentenced to three years of probation, a $10,000 fine and anger management classes.

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