Man who put up pro-white stickers on the Ped Mall identified

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Individual seen putting up pro-white stickers on the Ped Mall during the Iowa City Women’s March. Saturday, Jan. 20, 2018. — photo by Zak Neumann

The Iowa City Police Department (ICPD) has confirmed that Jonathan Charles Koch was the man seen putting pro-white stickers on the Ped Mall during the Iowa City Women’s March on Jan. 20.

After Little Village broke the news that someone in a hoodie had put “It’s Okay To Be White” stickers on Ped Mall property, and then tried to hide in MERGE after he was approached by a Women’s March participant with a camera, commentators on social media platforms tentatively identified Koch, an Iowa City resident, as the man in the Pepe the frog hoodie.

Many of the commentators were concerned because MERGE, a coworking space, is located next to the Ped Mall’s playground, and Koch was convicted of possession of child pornography in 2009.

Koch was spotted putting his stickers on public property as the Women’s March was winding down.

“I wanted to get a picture of what was happening, so I went down there,” Norbert Sarsfeld said. “When the guy saw me, he pulled his hoodie over his face and started walking away.”

Sarsfeld followed Koch as he walked to MERGE.

“He went in,” Sarsfeld said. “I started to follow him in, but he turned around, said, ‘Private property’ and he shoved me out of the door.”

Joshua Christain had also seen Koch putting up his stickers and followed him into MERGE.

“There are multiple exits from the building, and I didn’t want him to be able to just disappear with no ramification for what he’d been doing,” Christain said.

Christain knew the layout of the building from having spent time there before MERGE took over the property. He told Little Village he had the impression Koch was well acquainted with the layout of MERGE.

Jonathan Charles Koch attempting to hide in MERGE on Saturday, Jan. 20, 2018. — photo by Norbert Sarsfeld

Koch shut himself in a conference room and made a series of calls on his cell phone, while Christain waited outside the room. Eventually, ICPD officers arrived. Officers told Christain someone who did not leave a name had called the ICPD to report a trespasser in MERGE. The officers removed Koch from the conference room and interviewed him. The incident ended without anyone being arrested.

In an email to Little Village, MERGE confirmed Koch was a member of the coworking space on Jan. 20, but said his membership was terminated later that day. Membership in MERGE is open to the public. (Little Village has a coworking membership at MERGE.)

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“We have recently become aware of Mr. Koch’s past conviction and are currently reworking our member agreement and process for accepting new members to ensure this does not occur again. Mr. Koch is no longer a member of MERGE. We take the safety of our MERGE members and the community very seriously,” MERGE said in a statement provided to Little Village.

Koch was arrested by agents of the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation (DCI) in May 2007 for running an illegal high stakes poker games in his Riverside, Iowa home. As part of their investigation, agents seized computer equipment, including a flash drive. Six months after he was arrested, Koch pled guilty to the charge of running an illegal gambling operation, and was placed on probation.

In 2008, a DCI agent cataloging evidence discovered child pornography on the flash drive, and reexamination of the hard drive of a computer seized from Koch uncovered more child pornography images. Koch, who had moved to Iowa City, was charged with possession of child pornography. He was convicted in July 2009. On March 21, 2010, Koch, then age 22, was sentenced to 78 months in federal prison, to be followed by five years of probation after his release.

According to a Federal Bureau of Prisons database, Koch was released from prison on July 20, 2015. When he returned to Iowa, he was placed on the Iowa Sex Offender Registry.

Departmental regulations prevented the ICPD from publicly identifying Koch as the man in the Pepe hoodie, while the incident at MERGE was being investigated. On Thursday, ICPD Sgt. Derek Frank told Little Village the investigation was now closed.

Frank said no charges had been filed as a result of the MERGE incident, but the ICPD had provided information about the incident to Koch’s probation officer.

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  1. Well I am glad to see some progress on this situation. I wrote a number of letters to officials but only the Sheriff responded. The Sheriff gave me confidence something would be done .. The University, I did not write but they reacted swiftly and in the right way . Thanks Little Village for protecting our community by covering this story ..You updated it as it progressed. I did not see this from other media .. Good job ..

  2. So a women’s March against white men/people and the dude putting up stickers basically meaning that you don’t have to ashamed of being white is the racist here? Top notch Iowa city douchebags.

    1. You realize those stickers were created, and they are being distributed by a well-known neo-Nazi group? Nobody has a problem with saying it is okay to be white, but anyone who is up to date knows the origin of those stickers. The people who make those advocate for the mass deportation of all non-White citizens.

      Also, I wouldn’t make it a habit to defend pedos. I don’t care if he is on your side politically, he is scum and defending him without any acknowledgement of his child pornography shit makes you sound vile.

  3. The ramification of what Joshua Christain did on this day was to become king of the cucks. While the choice of stickers might make it a minor vandalism charge, if they had been simple fliers (non-stickers) your ass would had been subject to a lawsuit for interfering with the expression of one’s first amendment right (yeah Whites still have those too) along with any police agency that wanted to harass the activist as well.

    Pretty positive that king of the cucks Joshua would have not played the role of stalker/harasser had he noticed a muslim acting strange because the very thought of being considered racist makes him cringe and roll up into a little ball on the ground.

    Today king of the cucks, looking into the future I think I see a new title for JC, if American is ever to be healthy again ole JC and people like him will be known as one thing – acceptable losses.

    Now, and only now, you can kiss my a**!!

    1. Now Jonathan, you know that your parole officer said you aren’t allowed on the internet since you have a tendency to look at kiddie porn, you big silly pedo you, maybe you should finish your tendies and Mountain Dew and head to bed now. You can always play at saving the white race with your cartoon frog again tomorrow.

  4. Pepe the frog hoodie. This guy sure is desperate to play the victim.

    The ruling on the appeal of his sentencing (spoiler: he didn’t win) mentions that a near-total ban is reasonable given that he violated a less restrictive ban. (Previously he was allowed use for school and work.)

    Apparently his disregard for that restriction was discovered by the pretrial supervision officer who stopped by and heard a group voice chat about sexually abusing a child.

    Maybe he’s had the terms of his parole changed. But given that every other part of this stunt that could easily have been done in ways that would have improved the odds of staying out of prison…

    It seems like he prefers prison to his girlfriend’s company.

    1. *Near-total ban on internet use.

      Pretty sure his parole officer didn’t okay the sites used to coordinate these actions.

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