A former Senate candidate for Florida who headlined the infamous Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, Virginia in 2017 and inspired its slogans, has been arrested by police on a number of charges.
The Miami Heraldreported that Augustus Sol Invictus, born Austin Gilespie, 36, had been under surveillance since Christmas Day after South Carolina authorities told Florida officials he may be in the area.
He was arrested at a mall in Melbourne, Florida as he left a gym by officers from the Brevard County Sheriff’s Office.
He faces charges of “high and aggravated” domestic violence and possession of a firearm during a crime of violence, according to his arrestaffidavit. His address was listed as Ocala, Florida and jail records described him as an “out of state fugitive,” the Associated Press reported.
Invictus spoke at the United the Right rally in August 2017 where Heather Heyer was killed and several injured when white supremacist James Fields rammed his car into a crowd. In September 2019, Heyer’s motherfiled a wrongful death lawsuitagainst her daughter’s killer in Virginia state court.
President Donald Trump was criticized for his comments that during the rally, there were “very fine people on both sides” although he did later condemn neo-Nazis and white nationalists.
In 2016 Invictus unsuccessfully ran for Senator Marco Rubio’s seat as the Libertarian Party’s nomination and has described himself as a pagan.
Adrian Wyllie resigned as Libertarian Party chairman in 2015 in protest, accusing Invictus of being a fascist.
During his campaign, he raised eyebrows when he claimed to have killed a goat and drank its blood as part of a ritual at the end of a walk from Orlando to the Mojave Desert in 2013, according toThe Herald,which noted that his name comes from the Latin for “Majestic Unconquered Sun,” a cult religion of the Roman Empire.
He now runs website The Revolutionary Conservative, which calls for a violent uprising, the publication added.
Invictus has denied his affiliation with white supremacists but was praised by white nationalist leader Richard Spencer as being the author of the first draft of the so-called Charlottesville statement, which outlined racist views such as, “Whites alone defined America as a European society and political order. It also stated that “Jews are an ethno-religious people distinct from Europeans.”
Court records show he will appear in court on January 15 and is being held without bond.