FORKS, Wash. -- A multi-racial family from Spokane was harassed and trapped after locals accused them of being Antifa members and cut down trees to prevent them from leaving their campsite.
According to the Clallam County Sheriff's Office, deputies were dispatched Wednesday evening to Sitkum Sol Duc Road (locally known as the A Road) in Forks, where stranded campers had called for assistance. Trees had been cut down on the only road out of their campsite.
The campers were driving a full-sized school bus and told deputies they were planning to camp out overnight about five miles east of Highway 101.
Investigators said the four campers were a multi-racial family who had driven to the Olympic Peninsula from Spokane to camp. A husband, wife, 16-year-old girl and the husband's mother had driven to Forks Outfitters earlier that evening to buy camping supplies.
There, they said seven or eight carloads of people confronted them in the grocery store parking lot, repeatedly asking them if they were Antifa protesters.
The family said they were not associated with any group and were only there to camp. They said they had to drive their bus around the vehicles to get back onto the highway.
At least four vehicles followed them, with some of the people in the vehicles carrying semi-automatic rifles, the family told deputies.
The family drove the bus to the A Road and onto a logging spur road, where they pitched a tent. They decided to pack up their camp and leave after hearing gun shots in the distance and power saws down the road.
Four Forks High School students were using a chainsaw to clear the roadway for the family when deputies arrived.
Deputies escorted the family to the sheriff's office, interviewed them, and then helped them get out of town.
Detectives are investigating the incident and asking anyone with information to contact the Clallam County Sheriff's Office.
The theories about antifa — short for “anti-fascists” and an umbrella term for lefitst militant groups that confront or resist neo-Nazis and white supremacists at demonstrations — have trickled through cities across the country in recent days.
Police departments say people are phoning in “tips” they see on social media claiming antifa is sending buses or even planes full of antifa activists to their area.