Twenty federal criminal defendants related to last week’s deadly pro-Trump riot at the US Capitol have been rounded up across the country since the insurrection, with the allegations showing the danger of the mob.
Some of the defendants are accused of bringing weapons and bombs to Capitol Hill, indicative of the extremism of parts of the crowd.
Others were photographed ransacking the building, smiling while posing with congressional items such as House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s lectern or at her staffer’s desk, or publicly bragged about the crowd’s violent and destructive joyride.
Here are some of the key people arrested so far tied to last week’s attack:
Weapons and bombs brought to DC: The most unsettling of the allegations so far appear to be those against Lonnie Coffman, an Alabama man charged after authorities found 11 homemade bombs, an assault rifle and a handgun in his truck parked two blocks from the Capitol. The truck had sat there all morning during the pro-Trump rally, and Coffman was arrested as he tried to return to the vehicle after dusk.
In another startling complaint, Cleveland Grover Meredith Jr. is accused of writing in text messages that he wanted to shoot House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and that he had brought hundreds of rounds of ammunition and three guns to Washington, DC, having driven from Colorado, according to court records.
On Sunday night, authorities arrested two more men, Eric Munchel of Tennessee and Larry Rendell Brock of Texas. Both had drawn attention online because of photos showing them wearing body armor inside the Capitol building and carrying plastic ties that could restrain a person.
Viral rioters also charged: One of the federal defendants so far, Jacob Chansley — who wore into the Capitol no shirt, a bearskin headdress, face paint and horns and was captured in many images of the crowd — has already told the FBI he came to Washington “as a part of a group effort, with other ‘patriots’ from Arizona, at the request of the President that all ‘patriots’ come to D.C. on January 6, 2021,” according to his court documents.
Others charged with taking part in the melee, such as Proud Boys Hawaii founder Nick Ochs and Joshua Pruitt, who is identified in a November video reciting an oath to the Proud Boys, appeared to have allied with fringe groups like the Proud Boys and QAnon that have followed Trump.
Several others who were not charged with crimes have lost their jobs for attending the rally at which Trump spoke. One man, Derrick Evans, resigned from his recently won seat in the West Virginia House of Delegates after federal prosecutors charged him. He said he took responsibility for his actions — which included allegedly livestreaming his entry into the Capitol building and shouting “We’re in! We’re in, baby!” A man later approached him and shakes his hand, saying, “Welcome to Congress.”
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