A New Mexico county official was apprehended Sunday after federal authorities stated he went into a restricted area of the U.S. Capitol during the lethal pro-Trump attack and led rioters in prayer.
Couy Griffin, an Otero County commissioner and founder of Cowboys for Trump, was detained in Washington. D.C., and deals with a single charge of intentionally entering or remaining in a restricted structure without legal authority, a federal criminal problem stated.
In an affidavit, a Metropolitan Police detective said a Cowboys for Trump videographer informed authorities that after he and Griffin saw the group push previous security barriers, they scaled the Capitol’s wall before making their way to an outside deck.
There, Griffin utilized a bullhorn to lead the group in prayer, the document states.
In a video pointed out by the affidavit, Griffin also told the crowd that it was a “terrific day for America” which “people are showing that they have actually had enough.”
” People are ready for fair and legal elections, or this what you’re going to get,” he said, according to the affidavit.
In a Facebook post on the Cowboys for Trump page, Griffin later on said he prepared to return to the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 20 for a possible “second Change rally” that would consist of “blood lacking that structure,” the affidavit states.
At a Jan. 14 Otero County meeting, Griffin told other authorities that he intended on taking a rifle and a revolver when he went back to Washington, according to the affidavit.
Extra details about Griffin’s arrest was not detailed in the document, and it wasn’t clear whether he had maintained a legal representative. A message left with Cowboys for Trump was not instantly returned Sunday.
In an interview with authorities, Griffin stated he had actually gotten “caught up” with the crowd which authorities never asked him to leave, according to the affidavit.
He informed authorities he left the area in harmony and hoped there might be a modification in leadership “without a single shot being fired.” He added that there’s “no choice that’s off the table for the sake of flexibility,” the affidavit states.
Dozens of individuals have been jailed and charged for supposedly participating in the Capitol takeover, including a Kentucky guy who was taken into custody Sunday for appearing to utilize a rolled-up Trump flag to smash a window in the Speaker’s Lobby, which results in your home chamber, according to an affidavit submitted in federal district court in Washington.
Chad Barrett Jones faces charges of attack on a federal officer, violent entry and disorderly conduct on Capitol grounds and other crimes. It was unclear Sunday if Jones had a lawyer.
Court documents stated Jones was apprehended when a relative gotten in touch with authorities after seeing him in news coverage.
Another individual arrested Sunday, Bryan Betancur, was caught on video holding a Confederate battle flag in a limited section on the west side of the Capitol, the FBI said in court files.
Betancur, who was on probation for a burglary conviction, was wearing an ankle bracelet, and GPS information revealed he remained in the area for 3 hours on Jan. 6, according to the files.
Betancur deals with charges of participating in unlawful activities on restricted premises and other criminal offenses. It was unclear Sunday night whether he had an attorney.
In court documents unsealed Sunday, a Colorado male described as an affiliate of the 3 Percenters, a far-right militia group, was charged with assaulting a federal officer, aiding and abetting damage of federal property and other criminal activities.
In an affidavit, an FBI representative stated the guy, Robert Gieswein, was captured on video spraying police officers with an unidentified substance before he and others knocked down a barricade and rushed into the structure.
The representative stated Gieswein, who was seen wearing goggles and military-style equipment, appears to run a personal paramilitary training group, the Forest Wild Dogs. Court records did not note a legal representative for him.
A University of Kentucky student, Gracyn Courtright, faces charges of theft, purposefully getting in a restricted structure and other crimes, according to court files unsealed Sunday.
In Indiana, the FBI revealed the arrest of Jon Schaffer, a guitar player with the metal band Iced Earth, who apparently utilized pepper spray on Capitol Authorities. He deals with 6 charges, including engaging in physical violence in the Capitol, the FBI said.
In a Facebook post, Iced Earth’s bassist, Luke Appleton, said other band members “DO NOT condone nor do we support riots or the acts of violence that the rioters were associated with on January sixth at the US Capitol building. We hope that all those involved that day are brought to trial to be investigated and answer for their actions.”
It was uncertain Sunday night whether Schaffer had a legal representative.
Authorities still have hundreds of other open cases linked to the riot, in which 5 individuals died, consisting of Capitol Policeman Brian Sicknick. The FBI released photos Sunday of seven guys it stated attacked a Washington police officer.