On Monday, Mediaite reported that a GoFundMe page set up for Jon Ritzheimer, the Marine veteran who led the recent protest rally and cartoon contest at an Arizona mosque, was yanked. Additionally, Ritzheimer said on Facebook that his identity was stolen by hackers.
“I’ve had enough media BS for the day,” he wrote. “Hackers have now stolen my identity. Not one news out let will interview me. I just want my life back. I just want me and my family to disappear.”
Making matters worse, Ritzheimer told atombash.com in a Facebook conversation that personal details of his life was posted to a public webpage and $3000 was charged to his credit card. The page, as of this writing has already been viewed over 1,400 times. We agreed not to post a link to the page out of concern for Ritzheimer’s safety and privacy.
Ritzheimer posted a video to his Facebook page discussing the impact this has had on him and his family. Saying that he was “ill-prepared,” Reitzheimer said the whole incident has “blown up” in his face. Now, he just wants to be left alone.
He also blamed the media, saying reporters and pundits have twisted and distorted the entire event. He explained that he went to the contest with a gun on his hip thinking that a terrorist might try to murder him. He also acknowledged his T-shirt was offensive and called the cartoon contest “stupid,” but said he was tired of living under what amounts to an “assassin’s veto.”
“I fully, fully, expected that I was going to die that night,” he said. He went on to say that other Marines have criticized him for saying he was going into hiding. “It would better be described that I’m taking cover right now during a verbal firefight,” he added, criticizing his original choice of words. “But you can bet I’m gonna be returning fire.”
He also had sharp words for the government for allowing the threats and intimidation to take place, saying no one should have to endure what he has experienced. Moreover, he expressed concern that his daughters would grow up in a country where they would have to fear for their lives over something they said.
Ritzheimer went on to announce a website currently under construction and warned visitors to not believe anything the media reports. “There’s a ton” of fake Facebook accounts claiming to be his, he added. “Believe nothing you hear and half of what you see,” he advised. So far, Ritzheimer said he has heard nothing from the FBI, although local authorities are providing some support.