News & Politics

The Trucker Convoy Is Back (Sort of) and Its Leader Got Arrested in DC

The "1776 Restoration Movement" parked on the Mall today, and things did not go well

Screenshot via @QRemedyResearch.

Dave “Santa” Riddell was arrested in DC Wednesday. The DC Police confirmed his arrest to Washingtonian and said it was in response to a warrant from Maryland. Riddell is a Proud Boy who leads the 1776 Restoration Movement, which Washingtonians may remember as its old incarnation, the far-right People’s Convoy. That group annoyed DC drivers earlier this year, accomplished nothing, drove out west, returned, accomplished nothing yet again, then declared victory and said it was time to vamoose.

On Wednesday morning several former convoyers set up camp on the Mall, parking their flag-festooned vehicles and then sitting around in lawn chairs to achieve…well, that part has never been clear.

These folks are among the few dozen members of the group who stuck around, making a base for themselves in a sun-baked parking lot in Bunker Hill, West Virginia. They’ve motored around the DC area several times in recent days, trying to slow or stop traffic, and it’s this activity that appears to have caught up with Riddell.

The group’s Telegram chat currently thrums with the idea that Riddell’s arrest presages an epic battle between good and evil.

If you want to follow the misadventures of this group, follow “Quarks McQuade” and the collective QRemedyResearch on Twitter. They’re both invaluable resources.  

Senior editor

Andrew Beaujon joined Washingtonian in late 2014. He was previously with the Poynter Institute,, and Washington City Paper. He lives in Del Ray.