Politics

Over 300 charged from more than 40 states: What we know about the

America watched as hordes of rioters broke into the U.S. Capitol on January 6 — crushing through windows, pressing up stairways, and sending lawmakers and law enforcement running for their lives. The flood of protesters who streamed into the Capitol that day left federal authorities with an equally immense task: finding and charging those responsible.

Federal prosecutors have now charged more than 300 people, and arrested more than 280, in connection with the events of January 6, Acting Deputy Attorney General John Carlin said Friday. A Justice Department official said this week that the department had opened files on approximately 540 subjects.

“The investigation into those responsible is moving at a speed and scale that’s unprecedented, and rightly so. Those responsible must be held to account, and they will be,” Carlin said.

As law enforcement continues to round up alleged attackers, here’s what CBS News has learned about the people who were arrested:

How many have been charged?

Over 300 defendants have been charged in federal court. CBS News has reviewed the charging documents for 258 defendants whose cases were unsealed, and of those, at least 84 were also indicted by grand juries.

Where did they come from?

The alleged rioters come from at least 42 states outside of Washington, D.C. Among those arrested whose home states were known, the most were from Texas, with 25 Texans charged so far. New York had 21 residents arrested while Florida and Pennsylvania each had 20. 

How many have served in the military?

At least 23 of those arrested are veterans and three are currently enlisted in the military — two in the Army Reserve and one in the National Guard — according to military service records and court documents obtained by CBS News.

Of the veterans, 12 have served in the U.S. Marines, eight served in the Army, two served in the Navy and one served in the Air Force.

The Army Reserve shared the following statement with CBS News: “The U.S. Army Reserve takes all allegations of Soldier or Army civilian involvement in extremist groups seriously and will address this issue in accordance with Army regulations and the Uniform Code of Military Justice to ensure due process. Extremist ideologies and activities directly oppose our values and beliefs and those who subscribe to extremism have no place in our ranks.”

How many worked in law enforcement?

At least five of those arrested were employed as law enforcement officers at the time of the riot, and at least three of those arrested had previously worked as police officers. Prosecutors also charged one current firefighter and one retired firefighter. 

Of the five police officers, four have since lost their jobs. An officer in North Cornwall Township, Pennsylvania was suspended without pay after he was charged with, among other crimes, obstruction of law enforcement during civil disorder. Houston police officer Tam Dinh Pham and Monmouth County correctional police officer Marissa Suarez both resigned after they were arrested, and two Virginia police officers were fired after prosecutors charged them for their alleged conduct at the Capitol.

Laura Steele, a member of the Oath Keepers militia indicted for conspiracy, worked for the High Point Police Department in North Carolina for 12 years before she was terminated for conduct toward superior personnel, absence from duty, and violating a communications policy, a spokesperson for High Point Police said. Her husband, Kenneth Steele — who was not alleged to be at the Capitol riot — retired on January 1 as assistant police chief. Thomas Webster, who prosecutors said is a former New York Police Department officer, was charged after he allegedly lunged at a Capitol Police officer with a metal flagpole during the Capitol riot. Nicholes Lentz — who the Florida Department of Law Enforcement said is a former officer in the North Miami Beach and Fort Pierce police departments — was charged after posting videos from inside the Capitol. In a video, he said, “We’re not here to hurt any cops of course. I love my boys in blue, but this is overwhelming for them.”

Additionally, firefighter and paramedic Andrew Williams was arrested for his participation in the riot, and retired firefighter Robert Sanford was arrested and accused of throwing a fire extinguisher that hit three police officers in the head.

Common charges

Acting U.S. Attorney Michael Sherwin said last month that prosecutors would move away from charging the easily identifiable “internet stars” who appeared in photos and on social media and begin to build more complicated conspiracy cases related to militia groups’ coordination during the attack. So far, at least 18 have been charged with conspiracy, a charge that alleges they coordinated with others to commit an offense.

More than 20 have been charged under a destruction of government property statute. During proceedings for two of those defendants, the government said their crimes amounted to “terrorism” — an allegation that is not itself a charge but could influence prison sentences if the men are found guilty.

The FBI told CBS News earlier this month that 40 people have been arrested for assault on law enforcement officers. The crime carries penalties ranging from one to 20 years, depending on the circumstances of the assault. Federal prosecutors have also charged at least 195 alleged rioters with “restricted building or grounds” charges.

How many have extremist affiliations?

Authorities have connected at least 34 alleged rioters to extremist groups, including the Proud Boys, Oath Keepers, Three Percenters, Texas Freedom Force and the conspiracy group QAnon. 

How many were women?

While those arrested in the January 6 mob were mostly men, at least 31 women have also been arrested for their alleged participation.

How old were those arrested?

Among the 82 defendants whose ages are known, the average age was 42. The youngest-known alleged rioter is 18-year-old Bruno Joseph Cua, who prosecutors accused of assaulting an officer after he posted online, “President Trump is calling us to FIGHT!” 

The oldest rioters were two 70-year-old men: Bennie Parker, an alleged Oath Keeper, and Lonnie Coffman, an Alabama man who authorities say brought a car full of weapons and explosives to Washington, D.C. 

How many have been released?

At least 121 people have been approved to go home after posting bail or agreeing to supervised release.

How many leads are being followed?

Federal law enforcement has issued more than 500 grand jury subpoenas and search warrants, and the FBI has fielded more than 200,000 digital media tips from people hoping to share evidence of the riot.

Recent updates on notable cases

A Capitol riot suspect was turned in by his ex after he texted her, “If you can’t see the election was stolen you’re a moron.”

An Oath Keepers member, Jessica Watkins, on Tuesday became the third Capitol rioter accused of committing a “crime of terrorism.”

The daughter of a Virginia man arrested during the U.S. Capitol assault said her father is “brainwashed.”

Federal prosecutors indicted six members of the Oath Keepers militia, who the government added as co-defendants to an existing indictment for three alleged Oath Keepers. Seven of the group were part of a tactical “stack” of people dressed in combat gear who pushed through crowds to enter the Capitol, the government said.

Paulina Smolinski contributed to this report.

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