Getting to know Ashli Babbitt

To Trump and his followers, Ashli Babbitt is a martyr who gave her life to “Stop the Steal” (not voluntarily, it should be noted). But what was this mythical, heroic figure like in real life?

Ashli had left the military in 2016 after a combined 14 years in the Air Force and Air National guard punctuated by “disciplinary issues and insubordination,” according to people who served with her (see story here).

To Aaron Babbitt, she was a “foulmouthed chick” working his shift at a nuclear power plant. They were security guards. Although this story doesn’t explicitly say so, there’s an implication that maybe they were dallying on the job instead of guarding the plant.

When Ashli and Aaron met thusly, she had been married to Timothy McEntee for 14 years, whom she’d met in Alaska on Air Force duty, and Aaron had been living with Celeste Norris for the past 6 years.

Her affair with Babbitt ended her marriage to McEntee after Norris, trying to save her relationship with Babbitt, tipped off McEntee about what was going on.

At the time, all the parties were living in the Washington D.C. area. On July 29, 2016, Ashli spotted Norris’ car in traffic, did a U-turn, chased her down, and rammed her vehicle three times, then pounded on Norris’ window, screaming obscenities, and “telling me to get out of the car, that she was going to beat my ass.” Norris stayed locked in her car and called the cops.

Ashli, who lied to the cops and claimed Norris backed into her (see photo of Ashli’s car at right), was charged with several misdemeanors (?); and Norris sought, and got, a no-contact order against her.

Six months later, in February 2017, Norris got a second order against Ashli, “citing ongoing harassment and stalking. In a handwritten petition, Norris [said] that [Ashli] had recently followed her home from work and that she had also received repeated calls in the middle of the night from an unlisted number.”

In 2019, Norris sued Ashli for personal injury and received an undisclosed settlement from Ashli’s insurance company.

McEntee divorced Ashli in 2019, and she married Babbitt a month later. The Babbitts then moved back to her native California. Before long they were living in a threesome with a woman named Kayla Joyce, according to this story. (Photo below; text continues below photo.) She and Aaron, and his brother, ran a pool cleaning business. A judge slapped their company with a $71,000 judgment for failing to repay a loan.

Ashli became a QAnon follower, posting thousands of tweets that portrayed “her fall into a world” of conspiracy theories and illusions. She became a fanatic, spreading “far-right lies about the kidnapping of children by Hillary Clinton.” She was an avid Tucker Carlson fan, and called the Covid-19 pandemic a “F–KING JOKE.” On the plane to D.C., she chatted up a USA Today reporter.

On January 6, her eyes were fluttering as paramedics loaded her on a gurney and took her by ambulance to the hospital where she died.

Aaron and Joyce are still together, and “trying to salvage the family pool company, which has lost customers in the wake of the riot.” Joyce say of Ashli’s death in the Capitol insurrection, “We’re upset with her. We truly just never thought this would happen.”

Trump called Ashli’s death “a terrible loss.” Of course it was. (Not everyone thinks so, see photo below.) But for what? In service to what? Not democracy, or our country, or the public interest.

Is she a martyr? No, I don’t think that term really fits someone killed by police while committing a crime. Was she a heroic figure in real life? Nope, just a very screwed-up person — an insubordinate soldier, adulterer, stalker, road rager, deadbeat, nutcase, and last but not least, an insurrectionist. Some people might use the word “terrorist” to label her, but I think “deluded fool” fits better. No gullible believer of Trump’s election lies paid a higher price for his perfidy than she.

As for Trump, her blood is on his hands.

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