Former sheriff left Oath Keepers when organization changed

Former Elkhart Co. Sheriff Brad Rogers has released a statement after the ADL specifically mentioned him as a former member of the Oath Keepers in a story posted to their website on Tuesday.

The ADL published a story about the membership of the organization after analyzing the database of approximately 38,000 members of the Oath Keepers, which was leaked by the group DDoSecrets in September 2021.

The ADL article specifically mentions Brad Rogers of Elkhart as a "member" who is an elected official. Rogers is the former sheriff of Elkhart County and currently is a county commissioner.

Rogers says he was a member of the Oath Keepers until the organization began violating its own bylaws. He said he left the organization 8 years ago.

His detailed statement is below:

On January 6, 2021, the day the Capital building was attacked by civilians, I made the following statement which is posted on my social media: "As a respecter and defender of our National and State Constitutions, I defend the right of anyone to have their freedom of speech, freedom of assembly and the right to petition the government for redress of grievances, all done peacefully. This does not include rioting and tumultuous behavior that causes property damage and/or injury, and the taking over of government buildings or otherwise disrupting lawful assemblies. The actions by individuals on January 6, 2021, who have resisted and assaulted law enforcement officers to possess, damage, disrupt and take over the Capitol building in Washington, D.C., is abhorrent and without excuse and those who did so should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law."

In regards to Oath Keepers, I already spoke with Buzzfeed about this late last year and provided their reporter with additional information. I have not been a member of Oath Keepers for over 8 years.

The original stated mission of Oathkeepers centered around non-violent non-compliance with orders that violated the rights of all individuals. However, Oath Keepers leaders began to go on record that there will be "blood in the streets" and began promoting or encouraging civil war. These egregious statements are against the stated Oath Keepers’ bylaws that I initially found acceptable which say,

"No person who advocates, or has been or is a member, or associated with, any organization, formal or informal, that advocates the overthrow of the government of the United States or the violation of the Constitution thereof, shall be entitled to be a member or associate member and All members are to conduct themselves in a courteous and lawful manner at all times, and Oath Keepers shall have a zero tolerance policy for actions that bring disrespect, dishonor or disrepute on Oath Keepers or the military, law enforcement, firefighters and first responder community."

When this violation of their bylaws began, I and many others left the organization. When board members brought up concerns about the shift in direction Oathkeepers was taking, they were ignored - circumventing the organizational structure. They became disorganized, hence, why my outdated contact information is still on some of these lists. (The email list shows me as Sheriff, a position I have not held since 2018.)

I am an advocate for the protection of individual rights and the Constitution as our rule of law - something that Oath Keepers now stand opposed to. This is why I left the organization those years ago.

Share this article: