DC man faces gun charges, told family Pittsburgh shooting victims ‘deserved it’

WASHINGTON — A D.C. man suspected of being a white nationalist has been arrested on gun charges after he told his family the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting victims “deserved it.”

Jeffrey Clark, 30, of D.C.’s Bloomingdale neighborhood, is charged with illegally possessing a firearm, and possessing high-capacity magazines. He is being held without bond until a Friday detention hearing in federal court.

According to an FBI affidavit, family members grew concerned by Clark’s behavior and statements, especially after the Oct. 27 shooting at the Pittsburgh Tree of Life synagogue, allegedly by Robert Bowers.

Investigators determined Clark was connected with Bowers on the Gab social network, before the Pittsburgh shooting.

“In regard to the shooting at the Tree of Life Synagogue, Jeffrey Clark stated that the victims deserved it,” wrote FBI special agent Michael Bauknight. “Jeffrey Clark believed that a homosexual Jewish couple was having an adopted baby circumcised that week, and that justified Bowers’ actions.”

In one of his Gab posts, using a vulgar term for Jews, Clark said those shot “by the hero #RobertBowers were all active supporters of pedophilia … and every last one of them deserved exactly what happened to them and so much worse.”

The court document alleges Clark and his brother Edward, who fatally shot himself on Roosevelt Island near the District hours after the Pittsburgh shooting, were involved in alt-right movements.

Family members told the FBI the Clark brothers attended the 2017 “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville and there are photos posted online of them standing next to James Alex Fields, who faces murder and hate charges in Virginia.

Neal Augenstein

Neal Augenstein has been a general assignment reporter with WTOP since 1997. He says he looks forward to coming to work every day, even though that means waking up at 3:30 a.m.

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