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Tim Gionet (right) and his friend at Friday's ICE protest.EXPAND
Tim Gionet (right) and his friend at Friday's ICE protest.
DLive

Alt-Right Troll Baked Alaska Shows He Hasn't Changed at ICE Protest in Phoenix

You may recall alt-right troll Tim "Baked Alaska" Gionet from that time he was a featured speaker at the Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, where he participated in the torch-lit march while shouting, "You will not replace us!"

Or maybe you remember the time he hosted neo-Nazi blogger Andrew Anglin on his YouTube channel, or the time he shared gas chamber memes on Twitter and posted an infamous neo-Nazi slogan before being banned.

Not ringing any bells? How bout the time he filmed himself asking for a 13-year-old girl's phone number while he joked that he would "grab her by the pussy."

If you can't remember him, that's okay — Gionet has faded into obscurity since his internet career plummeted after being kicked off Twitter for violating the platform's hateful conduct policy. But in recent months, Gionet has moved to Phoenix and has attempted to make some semblance of a comeback by claiming he has distanced himself from the alt-right, disavowed extremism, and now supports Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang.

But Gionet's attempt to convince a Barstool reporter that he had turned over a new leaf resulted only in the memorable headline, "Infamous Neo-Nazi 'Baked Alaska' Says Being A Neo-Nazi 'Was A Pretty Big Disaster, To Be Honest' Because He Can't Get A Job And Lost All His Friends, On Account Of Him Being A Neo-Nazi."

It seems Gionet hasn't entirely abandoned his old ways.

Last Friday, the 31-year-old showed up at a protest outside of Immigration and Customs Enforcement's Phoenix office, where he alternately pretended to be a reporter and a protester, referred to a woman in a burka as "Sharia," laughed at a joke that she may have a bomb, and said he voted for Governor Doug Ducey because Ducey is "based and red-pilled," two terms commonly used by the alt-right to describe people who subscribe to their point of view.

Gionet, who at one point had nearly 200,000 followers on Twitter, spent three hours livestreaming himself on DLive. Just 113 people viewed the video. Throughout the protest, as his video shows, Gionet attempted to incite protesters to say something stupid on camera by pretending to agree with them and trying to rile them up. He also antagonized working journalists covering the rally by mocking them and interrupting their camera shots.

Gionet also managed to escape arrest at the protest, perhaps because he spent much of the night attempting to flatter Phoenix police, saying things like "Blue Lives Matters" and "I'm on your side" to crowd-control officers. The point when Gionet could have been arrested, as his video shows, came after police advanced on protesters who had sat down in the street to block traffic.

The video shows police arresting the protesters who were sitting in the street, then moving onto the sidewalk, where the remaining protesters had gathered. As police move to arrest people on the sidewalk, several people move farther out of the way, including Gionet, his friend Nick Abbitt, a member of the Arizona Patriots Eduardo Jaime, reporters from AZFamily (KTVK-TV), ABC15 (KNXV-TV), and the Arizona Mirror, as well as protesters Phil Martinez and Jorge Soria.

While Gionet talks with Martinez, Abbitt heckles 62-year-old Jorge Soria, who is being interviewed by Arizona Mirror reporter Laura Gómez Rodriguez. All of a sudden, a police officer runs up, grabs Soria by the neck, and throws him to the ground.

"They got him, they got him!" Abbitt shouts, then, "I'm on your side, I'm on your side!" as police continue to run toward him, Gionet, and Martinez.

Police then grab Martinez and allow Abbitt, Gionet, and Eduardo from the Arizona Patriots movement to walk away.

"We love our cops!" Gionet says as he walks away. "Dude, they almost grabbed us at the end."

Martinez and Soria were among 14 people arrested for allegedly obstructing the public order, but their charges were later dropped.

Asked why Phoenix police chose only to arrest Soria and Martinez, but not others standing in the same place, Phoenix police spokesperson Sergeant Mercedes Fortune said, "It is my understanding that an argument was occurring. The two who were arrested were involved in the argument."

As can be seen in the video, Martinez and Soria were not talking with each other at all or even standing near each other at the time of their arrests.

Phoenix police did not respond to follow-up questions.

"Go ahead and publish publicly known false statements about Baked and see how far up the ass you’ll get taken in court," Gionet said in an email to New Times. "No one reads this shitrag of a newspaper anyway, the biggest excitement you have all year is a Baked Alaska hit piece you brain dead morons. Keep sucking commie cock."

During the livestream, Gionet said he planned on "doing a lot more of these."

The video Gionet made at the protest, reviewed by Phoenix New Times, is two hours and 25 minutes long. As the recording starts, it's already dark outside and protesters are walking down the street chanting, "Close the camps," after leaving the church where everyone assembled prior to the march.

"We don't want kids going to summer camps, they're learning too many skills, get them out of there!" Gionet shouts. "All lives matter!"

At other points, Gionet goes along with the protesters, saying things like "They're concentration camps," "Stop ICE," and "Never forget, we don't want this to happen again. Hey pound it, solidarity."

"We gotta close all these summer camps, after that kid drowned," says a man with a mustache and glasses. He's wearing a shirt that says "security" on it; Gionet later refers to the man as Nick Abbitt.

"Is that Pastor Steven Anderson?" Gionet says sarcastically as activist Reverend Redeem Robinson walks by. "You know he's in Phoenix?" Gionet says of Anderson, a notorious anti-Semitic and homophobic preacher who openly calls for the execution of all homosexuals.

By pretending to agree with their message and asking questions while filming as marchers pass by, Gionet gets many people to speak with him, openly and unguarded, about what brought them out. At several points, it appears Gionet is attempting to goad people into saying something inappropriate.

"Why are they threatening to arrest people?" He says after police ask protesters to stay on the sidewalk.

"Because they're saying that if you're in the street —" one woman begins to answer.

"This is a legal assembly dude!" Gionet shouts.

"Yes, but you gotta stay on the sidewalk," another woman replies.

"Okay," he says and walks away. "Apparently they're threatening to arrest people, IDK why," he says as he walks through the crowd. "Do you know who's threatening to arrest people?"

"Um, probably the police," a woman responds. Gionet walks away again.

Around the 20 minute-mark, Gionet approaches police and asks them if they will arrest or pepper-spray anyone. When they ask him to move away, he says, "Yes, sir." He then returns to Abbitt and a woman who uses the moniker "Bluntly Blondie" on social media. Gionet appears friendly with her in the video.

"We're gonna get you a press badge," Gionet tells the woman. "Nick, will you show her your press badge? ... We made these press badges, we're gonna bring it next time."

On several occasions, Gionet tries unsuccessfully to rile others up. He tells one marcher, "I heard they plan on tear-gassing people." She ignores him and continues walking.

Minutes later, Gionet asks a line of police officers whether they're going to tear-gas people. The officer shrugs.

"No? You don't know? Okay, I'm with the press, so ..." Gionet claims again as he walks away. Later, facing the camera and speaking directly to the 44 people viewing his livestream, Gionet says, "I am in the street, too, but I’m press and I’m covering the event."

"They got that Soros money flowing in here, so there's gonna be more of these," Gionet says of the protest, apparently referencing a conspiracy theory that George Soros pays protesters to attend demonstrations.

"Thank you for your service," Gionet says to a wall of police officers roughly an hour into the livestream. "I'm on your side, one of the only ones." The officers do not respond.

"You know who’s based? Based and red-pilled?" Gionet asks the blond woman, who is also recording. "Doug Ducey," Gionet says, noting that he liked how Ducey pulled money from Nike after the company decided to discontinue a shoe featuring the "Betsy Ross" flag.

"Love you Doug Ducey!" Gionet shouts. "I voted for him."

Gionet moves on to hassle reporters. For several minutes, Gionet records ABC15's Zach Crenshaw, who appears to be getting ready to broadcast as he sips from a water bottle and motions to a cameraman. Then, he interrupts a Telemundo reporter in the middle of a broadcast. "Buddy, we're live! We're live on Telemundo!" Gionet says, putting his arm on the reporter and stepping into his shot.

Gionet interrupting a Telemundo reporter.EXPAND
Gionet interrupting a Telemundo reporter.
DLive

Gionet returns to recording Crenshaw, who is now in the middle of a broadcast. Gionet hovers in the background of Crenshaw's shot and continues to record him for several more minutes, at one point shouting, "ABC News!"

Moments later, Gionet is flummoxed after a protester hands him a backpack and asks him to give it to a homeless person. Gionet and his female friend suggest there may be a bomb in the backpack and ask several other people to take it. Eventually, the woman leaves the backpack elsewhere.

"Well, we got rid of it," Gionet says.

"Well, a Sharia is here, you know they go kaboom spontaneously," the blonde woman says.

After mocking a few protesters, who begin to grow suspicious of him, Gionet walks over and interrupts Briana Whitney from AZFamily as she broadcasts, just seconds after again calling himself a member of the press for the fourth time that night.

"OMG is that AZFamily?" he says sarcastically "I love you guys. I follow you on Pinterest!"

Crenshaw, who is standing nearby, steps in. "Hey, she's trying to do her job," Crenshaw says.

Gionet turns the camera on Crenshaw, "I follow her on Pinterest! What do you mean? You're from ABC News. I love you, too! Why are you touching me, bro?" he shouts when Crenshaw attempts to guide him out of the way.

"We are trying to do our job," Crenshaw says, brushing Gionet off.

Nearly two hours into the protest, some have started to realize Gionet and his friends are not on their side and tell them to leave.

"No one's gonna touch me, 'cause there's a whole bunch of police officers over there and I probably know most of their names," Gionet's friend Abbitt claims at one point.

The stream quickly devolves into a cringe-worthy level of immaturity as Gionet, Abbitt, and a protester they annoyed argue with each other using baby voices and mocking tones, constantly repeating themselves.

"Are you done, fatty? Are you done, fatty?" Gionet says over and over.

Someone recognizes Gionet and identifies him to the rest of the crowd, shouting, "That's Baked Alaska, known alt-right commentator, notorious YouTube personality ... he was at Charlottesville. He's trying to get famous cause he fell off, and he tried to do this corny rap shit and that didn't work out so he moved back into his parents' basement and shit."

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