After 11 court continuations stretching over two years, the trial of Joseph Alcoff, an alleged Washington D.C. Antifa leader and self-declared communist, is finally slated to begin on Aug. 17 for his alleged role in a 2018 attack on two Marine reservists in Philadelphia.

The trial will put the loosely-knit organization and its tactics back in the public eye, after Antifa’s notoriety spread in the wake of events like the 2017 Charlottesville “Unite the Right” rally and coordinated attacks on cities from Kenosha to Portland in the unrest that followed the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis in 2020.

According to court documents, Alcoff’s trial was originally slated for Nov. 2019, roughly one year after the original attack. Since then, the case has undergone numerous delays, and has bounced between four different judges in that time.

The case was originally assigned to Judge Scott DiClaudio, but was then moved elsewhere. DiClaudio has had an ongoing feud with Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner, with Krasner at one point demanding DiClaudio recuse himself from all criminal trials. The DA argued that Judge DiClaudio could not be impartial in criminal cases because his life partner was a former prosecutor.

Two other men charged, Thomas Massey and Thomas Keenan, are both from Philadelphia, according to court documents. Alcoff is from Brooklyn.

The marines, Alejandro Godinez and Luis Torres, were at a Marine ball not far from a conservative “We the People” rally just blocks away in November of 2018. At the rally, some counter protesters attacked the conservatives, and were arrested by police. 

Alcoff has been charged with aggravated assault, ethnic intimidation, conspiracy, terroristic threats, receiving stolen property, and other felonies stemming from the incident. He is currently out on bail which was set at $15,000. It is unclear how Alcoff paid his bail, and whether outside organizations helped him raise the funds.

Alcoff also has a documented history of aggressive behavior. In 2005, he was videotaped harassing a reporter before yelling “I’m a communist motherf*****” and spitting on him.

According to an investigation conducted by the Daily Caller Foundation, Alcofff has used various pseudonyms to conceal his identity online. On his Twitter account, which is protected but named “Viva Fidel” for the time being, his bio states: “sabotage capitalism.” Alcoff has previously called for political violence, claiming that people should “stop limiting themselves” to non-violent action.

Alcoff has been pictured with Representative Maxine Waters (D-CA), and worked at Americans for Real Bank Reform, a progressive nonprofit that has since removed references to him from their website. 

Alcoff is also supposedly a friend of Mark Way, author of the infamous “Antifa Handbook”.

Joe Silverstein is the summer Editorial Intern at Broad + Liberty. He is a rising senior at Cornell University, where he studies Government and International Relations. Silverstein serves as the current Editor in Chief of the Cornell Review.

4 thoughts on “Trial of Antifa leader accused of 2018 Marines assault set to begin this month”

  1. Antifa “leader”? How exactly does one become a “leader” when there’s no structure or organization or even official membership?

    It’s too bad for him he wasn’t one of the Trump thugs who killed a cop and then pillaged and looted the Capitol in the name of debunked conspiracy theories. If he were, he’d be let off with a light misdemeanor charge.

    1. OK. He’s not a leader. Probably not even Antifa, though he looks like he smells bad, so that’s a clue.
      He’s a dirtbag who helped assault 2 Marines. Stole their property, attacked them and then screamed racial slurs as he did so.
      He committed hate crimes, stole and assaulted people. Whether he is Antifa or not, he’s clearly scum.
      If he is Antifa I guess he would be scum with delusions of grandeur, and probably whatever other mental illness people of that ilk have.
      There are no leaders in Antifa, everyone knows that. It takes spine to be a leader and no one in Antifa has one.
      It takes integrity to be a leader. No one in Antifa has any.
      If there were no police and no justice system, I would gladly shoot him dead in the face. Multiple times. With a 7.62 rifle. If there were such a thing as hate crimes against Antifa, (which doesn’t even exist, obviously, no org, no structure, no membership), I guess put me down for a few of those.
      Because I truly and thoroughly hate them and will gleefully commit violent crimes against them if they ever identify as Antifa, start spouting communist BS or telling me how peaceful and not notsi they are as they attack people and attempt to remove first amendment rights from other people.
      Antifa should be careful what they wish for, because anyone that thinks eliminating law and order will serve Antifa well, is a moron. Of course, being a moron is the FIRST requirement to join Antifa, so it probably hasn’t occurred to any of them. Sorry. I forgot, there is no organization, no leaders (for multiple obvious reasons) and no membership.
      Guess that means can’t commit hate crimes against them. phew. Lucky for me.

    1. So did Trump, ironically. He also went to an elitist Ivy League university, is heavily invested in foreign countries, made MAGA hats in China, employed illegal immigrants, and is about as far from living by Christian morals as one can get… ironically.

      Of course, we all know that if this guy didn’t have “wealthy NYC parents” he’d be attacked like AOC gets attacked by the elitist right for being “just” a working class bartender. The only thing the right is consistent about is agreeing it’s ok to attack the background of people they disagree with.

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