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More than 50 facing charges for Wednesday's violent siege of the U.S. Capitol

APTOPIX Electoral College Protests
Posted at 4:25 PM, Jan 08, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-08 16:38:03-05

WASHINGTON — More than a dozen people are formally facing federal charges in connection with Wednesday’s violent riot at the U.S. Capitol. In addition, another 40 people have been arrested and charged in Superior Court.

In an update Friday afternoon, the Justice Department said 13 individuals are accused of federal crimes, the majority for allegedly knowingly entering or remaining in any restricted building or grounds without lawful authority, and engaging in disorderly conduct on Capitol grounds.

However, others have additional charges ranging from making threats, to weapons violations, to assault on a federal law enforcement officer.

Those charged so far include Richard Barnett, who was arrested earlier in the day in Arkansas. He is the man seen in a widely-shared image sitting behind Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi’s desk. He faces charges of knowingly entering or remaining in any restricted building or grounds without lawful entry; violent entry and disorderly conduct on Capitol grounds; and theft of public money, property, or records.

“To be clear, what took place that day was not First Amendment-protected activity, but rather an affront on our democracy," said FBI Director Christopher Wray in a written statement. "We will continue to aggressively investigate each and every individual who chose to ignore the law and instead incite violence, destroy property, and injure others."

The charges also list Lonnie Coffman, of Alabama, who allegedly had 11 explosive devices in his car. As well as Mark Leffingwell, who faces additional charges of assault.

“Leffingwell allegedly entered the Senate side of the Capitol and when stopped by law enforcement, struck an officer in the helmet and chest,” the Justice Department release states.

The approximately 40 others who face charges in Superior Court include allegations of unlawful entry, curfew violation and “firearms-related crimes.”

Only a handful of people have made court appearances so far Friday.

In a release, the U.S Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia says “investigations are ongoing” and additional complaints “have been submitted.”

The FBI, ATF, U.S. Marshals Service, Capitol Police, and Metropolitan Police are all assisting in the investigation into anyone involved in the riots at the Capitol on Wednesday.