Bonnie Nichols, wife of Jan. 6 defendant Ryan Nichols, said in a video posted to social media that her husband is being tortured in the custody of the U.S. government and has yet to be brought to trial.
“[He has] been suffering in prolonged solitary confinement in the D.C. jail for over 19 months,” she said.
“Ryan served his country honorably as a United States Marine Corps veteran. He took an oath to defend his Constitution against all enemies foreign and domestic, and that oath does not end whenever you leave active-duty service,” Bonnie added.
“Ryan was very concerned about the election, as any American should be, so Ryan went to the Capitol on Jan. 6 to peacefully protest, [to exercise] his First Amendment rights as millions of other Americans did that day,” she said.
Meet Bonnie Nichols. Her husband, USMC Veteran Ryan Nichols, has been held in the DC Jail for 590 days.
He’s been tortured in solitary confinement, & is being denied basic human & constitutional rights.
His crime? Protesting Joe Biden.
— Alex Bruesewitz ?? (@alexbruesewitz) August 30, 2022
Ryan faces many of the charges fellow Jan. 6 defendants face, like obstructing an official proceeding and parading in the Capitol building. According to the affidavit filed by federal prosecutors, he also faces the more serious charge of possessing a deadly weapon — a crowbar.
He was allegedly captured on video spraying what was believed to be pepper spray in the direction of a Capitol entranceway guarded by law enforcement. According to prosecutors, he is also seen in a video yelling into a bullhorn, “If you have a weapon, you need to get your weapon!”
KYTX-TV reported in February that Ryan has refused a plea deal and has pleaded not guilty to all charges.
Bonnie alleged that her husband is being held in “torturous conditions.”
The Texan has been denied the opportunity to see his family, including his two young boys, since being taken into custody, Bonnie said.
“My kids pray every night before bed that their daddy will come home,” she shared. “It’s really unfortunate to watch my children grow up without their father, and they’re only 6 and 8 years old. They haven’t been able to see their father in over 575 days, and we have no end in sight.”
Ryan has not been given the access to legal documents and evidence against him normally afforded defendants, according to his wife.
The Marine vet suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder, making his detention all the more difficult.
At one point, Ryan was placed in “the hole” without water, Bonnie said.
“From there he finally went on suicide watch where he was strapped to a bench and tortured and taunted and teased for his political ideology,” she added.
Ryan’s detention has taken an incredible toll on their family, Bonnie said.
“It’s wrong. It’s illegal. It’s illegal in multiple states for you to be in solitary confinement for more than 21 days,” she explained. “These guys are going and staying in solitary confinement for over 19 months at a time.”
The Nichols have been engaged in a legal fight to try to get Ryan released to home detention or monitored release ahead of his trial, but so far have been unsuccessful.
“We’re taking on the U.S. government, but not only that, this is a spiritual battle. This is like David and Goliath,” Bonnie said.
Joseph D. McBride, a lawyer representing Ryan and other Jan. 6 defendants, is building a case to sue the federal government for abuses his clients have allegedly suffered, American Greatness reported.
“Legally, a pre-trial detainee in America is not allowed to be punished, never mind tortured,” McBride told “Conservative Review” podcast host Daniel Horowitz, according to American Greatness.
“In the United States of America, we only punish convicted persons,” McBride continued, “meaning you had your day in court, and you either were convicted guilty, or you took a plea and you admitted guilt. Then and only then you can be punished and jailed. And even in those sets of circumstances, the punishment for your crime is the deprivation of your freedom.”
Last night I had the distinct honor of introducing Bonnie Nichols to Micki Witthoeft.
Micki lost her daughter Ashli Babbitt on J6. Bonnie’s husband Ryan Nichols is locked up a few hundred yards away from where we were standing, on the other side of the towering prison walls. pic.twitter.com/r4839FK8fR
— Joseph D. McBride, Esq. (@McBrideLawNYC) August 20, 2022
“The standard for a convicted person is no cruel and unusual punishment,” the attorney noted. “The standard for a pre-trial detainee — because that person has not been convicted of any crime and is still presumed innocent — is that no punishment of any kind is acceptable. Meaning, if you punish somebody, and they’re a pre-trial detainee, you have violated their constitutional rights.”
The Sixth Amendment guarantees the right to a speedy trial.
The Eighth Amendment states, “Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.”
“When Joe Biden goes up there and calls these people ‘insurrectionists’ and calls these people ‘terrorists,’ even though they haven’t been charged with insurrection, even though they haven’t been charged with terrorism, why is he doing that? He is doing that to create a subhuman, sub-constitutional class of people,” McBride said.
The Patriot Project reached out to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia for comment regarding the allegations of torture made by Bonnie Nichols and McBride as well as why Ryan Nichols has not been given a speedy trial or released from his pre-trial detention.
A representative for the office responded via email, “We typically do not comment on cases beyond our public statements and filings to the Court, and have no comment.”
A version of this article originally appeared on Patriot Project.
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