Far-right conspiracist group FEC United and its militia division, the United American Defense Force (UADF), are seeking assistance (cash, food, clothes, housing, and more) for victims of the Marshall Fire and taking applications from victims to receive help, if the victims upload copies of their “driver’s license and a bank statement or bill” to FEC’s website.
“The Marshall Fire Evacuees are facing months or more of displacement and insecurity,” states FEC United’s Facebook page. “We are here to help! We are now accepting applications for displaced families. We stand together, we fight together, and we get through challenging times — together. If you or someone you know needs assistance, please complete this form and share this resource.”
Because FEC United is using rhetoric and organizing tactics, including the formation and deployment of a militia, that raise the specter of violence, its request of personal information from fire victims, ostensibly to vet applicants, is seen by some as potentially dangerous or as opportunistic.
FEC United founder Joe Oltmann recently called for Colorado Gov. Jared Polis and others to be hanged for treason. Oltmann was present at the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol and is one of Colorado’s top promoters of baseless election conspiracies. Oltmann is a plaintiff in the defamation lawsuit filed by Dominion Voting System’s Eric Coomer, along with Trump lawyers Sidney Powell and Rudy Giuliani.
The leader of UADF is John “Tig” Tiegen, a former Marine and Trump campaign spokesman who’s said UADF teaches “urban warfare”. He labels himself a “government official” on his Facebook page. His Twitter page appears to have been suspended.
In 2020, Tiegen organized a rally in Colorado to “TAKE OUR FUCKING COUNTRY BACK.”
UADF’s membership fee includes “access to legal protection for members in the event of having to discharge a weapon to stop a threat,” according to its website.
UADF and FEC United, which was led in 2020 by Colorado Republican Party Chair Kristi Burton Brown, were present at school board meetings in Colorado last year, causing disruptions and amping up tensions.
FEC United organized the “Patriot Muster” rally in 2020 in Denver that turned deadly when a private security guard hired by 9News to protect its reporters shot and killed a rally attendee who pepper-sprayed him.
“FEC United and community members are taking donations for gift cards, water, non-perishable food, pet food, horse feed, baby items, blankets, clothes, and toiletries,” states FEC United’s Facebook post, which had only 17 “likes” and seven “shares” as of Wednesday. “Volunteers are needed to offer temporary shelter to evacuees, stalls/pastures for horses, and haul items to needed locations for evacuees and emergency service workers, regardless of vaccination status or political affiliation. Believe it or not, unvaccinated Americans are experiencing first-hand discrimination while trying to find temporary shelter for their families. It’s time for action that walks the talk. Let’s care for our neighbors. Make a donation at the link below or visit the link in the image to sign up to volunteer.”
UADF did not respond to a request for comment. Reached via Facebook message, FEC United declined to answer any of CTR’s questions about how the group planned to use fire victims’ personal information, whether it intended to keep it, and what if any government agencies it was working with. Instead it offered the following statement: “You are an ANTIFA ACTIVIST. You are not a reporter. You are a piece of trash.”
On its Facebook page, FEC United stated that the Colorado Times Recorder is run by “evil, selfish and unhappy people” and is an “ANTIFA far left terrorist group.” FEC United has the right to think we are evil, selfish, and unhappy, but CTR is not an ANTIFA terrorist group.
“I think it is important to be transparent,” stated FEC United. “This is a post put up by an ANTIFA far left terrorist group. While we have been doing the hard work and helping the people in Boulder County tirelessly for the last 5 days straight, these classy hateful people are concerned with us serving others.
“We will continue to stand up and serve those in need,” FEC United continued. “As for verifying information, We collect this information for the safety of the community as there are many fraudulent bad actors trying to gain access to the grants we have available. UADF and FEC collectively have delivered over 1600 cases of water, countless truck loads of food, supplies, shoes, etc, and connected nearly a dozen host families to over 70 who have been displaced. Not counting the funds distributed to those in need.
“Don’t pay attention to evil, hateful groups and their trash… it is not worth your time… they are not worth your time. Prayers to all those affected, we will continue to serve despite the evil we face. You should as well…”
UPTATED Jan. 8 with a response from FEC UNITED’s Facebook page.