A 74-year-old U.S. Army veteran is set to go on trial next month for the ‘crime’ of posting two American flags on the fence of a Los Angeles VA facility -- and the Justice Department is facing calls to drop the case.
The criminal prosecution of Robert Rosebrock dates back to charges filed under the Obama administration, but conservative group Judicial Watch is hoping new Attorney General Jeff Sessions will take a second look.
“Frankly, President Trump should ask why the VA and his Justice Department are trying to jail this American patriot,” Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton said in a statement. His group is now representing Rosebrock.
“The federal government’s pursuit of these vindictive charges against Mr. Rosebrock is mind-blowing,” he added.
Judicial Watch Director of Litigation Paul Orfanedes confirmed to Fox News they have reached out to Sessions with a request to intervene before the scheduled March 7 trial.
Rosebrock is facing one criminal charge for displaying an American flag without permission on the fence outside the Greater Los Angeles Veterans Affairs (GLAVA) facility during a protest of the VA’s treatment of homeless veterans.
The charge is related to a 1973 VA regulation that prohibits individuals from posting materials or placards on VA property except when authorized by the head of the VA facility or a designee.
Rosebrock faces a criminal count of violating that policy during a protest last Memorial Day and on June 12, 2016. In the second incident, Rosebrock was not even the individual who posted the flag. Orfanedes told Fox News the reason why the police chose to enforce the policy on those days remains unclear.
Rosebrock is facing an two additional counts for allegedly taking unauthorized photos of a VA police officer on Memorial Day and during the second protest when conservative activist Ted Hayes was handcuffed and detained. Hayes is not being prosecuted.