By Anna Giles

OAKDALE (CBS13) — An armed militia group was caught on camera patrolling in rural Stanislaus County Saturday.

Witnesses said it was in response to a Black Lives Matter protest over the weekend that never happened. Local police condemned the militia on social media and said they had absolutely no authority.

An employee at a business in Oakdale told CBS13 it was the owner of property off E F street who hired the group for protection in case of protests. The move caused many in the community to be upset and frightened.

“It was frightening and I was flabbergasted and frustrated and angry,” said Malissa Reed, who said she spotted the militia while driving through Oakdale over the weekend.

Oakdale Police had harsh words, telling the community “the group was not welcome by our police department. Once we learned of their presence we immediately approached the group and advised them that their presence was doing more harm and raising tensions.”

“I felt like there was snipers on the buildings just waiting for something to happen,” said Dezirae Williamson, an employee at Harvey’s Shoe Repair.

Last week a protest in Oakdale started peacefully but took a violent turn. And since then, shops have boarded up their windows, some said out of fear for their property.

“I’ve had my shop for over 21 years and I have to board up my windows. A small business like this, it could affect me very bad,” said Javier Melgoza, the owner of Harvey’s Shoe repair.

Oakdale Police are investigating the militia and considering further action. According to a Facebook post from the department, the militia is allowed to open carry a weapon on private property but they cannot do that on public property.

Officers said this group was seen armed in public areas, but they weren’t made aware until after they left. The Stanislaus County Sheriff said the group has no official standing and no authority.

Meantime, one Oakdale business owner prays for peace.

“I want to hear, I want to understand I want to contribute in whatever way I can,” said Pamela Thomas, who owns a gym in Oakdale.

Comments (5)
  1. Joseph Joseph says:

    The local police are out of their mind! CA…nuff said!
    Let us all understand that Floyd was no saint, and had multiple criminal activities in his past!
    The police officers involved in Floyd’s death are being prosecuted, so there is NO RATIONAL FOR LOOTING AND DESTRUCTION OF PROPERTY. Who in their right mind would want to be a police officer today???
    Peaceful demonstrations are one thing; looting and property destruction are something else!
    Cities experiencing rioting, looting and destruction of property are typically run by incompetent liberals!
    NYC and Seattle are prime examples!
    With FEW exceptions, the black “culture” is a plague on the civilized world, evidenced by rioting, looting and destruction of property for almost ANY reason, our prison population, FATHERLESS black homes, section 8 ghettos, welfare roles and recipients wearing $400 sneakers, Chicago, Haiti, stone age Africa…same everywhere blacks gather in large numbers.
    Prudent citizens have armed themselves and learned how to use their weapon….be prudent!
    The REAL solution to stop looting and property damage is to AUTHORIZE LETHAL FORCE AND USE IT!
    After a few dead bodies, the lawlessness will stop in a heartbeat, once they understand that their actions have serious consequences!

  2. Richard Martinez says:

    A Black Lives Matter protest that didn’t happen ……. let that sink in …..civilian militia on hand …. your welcome police force ……

  3. Steve Kasian says:

    “The Stanislaus County Sheriff said the group has no official standing and no authority.”

    Those AR-15s give them PLENTY of authority. TRY THEM, COWARD COPS!
    You gonna kneel down in subservience to your black massas, cowardly cops?

    Your department is a disgrace to law enforcement.

  4. XYZ says:

    You defund the police, whaddaya expect. Defund the limosine liberal hypocrits in political office first.

  5. Peter Holiday says:

    To: Malissa Reed
    You are the quintessence of a millennial snowflake who can’t find her safe space. Time will come when you will welcome the militia with open arms.

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