Hundreds of rioters surged into the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, smashing windows, ramming up stairwells, and sending politicians and law officers fleeing for their lives. The massive influx of protestors into the Capitol that day presented federal officials with an equally daunting task: identifying and prosecuting those responsible.
About 465 people had been detained in connection with the riots as of Friday, June 4, CBS News citing the Department of Justice data reported.
In a Friday court filing, the government indicated that they expect to charge at least 550 people.
In a March court filing, the government stated that the Capitol attack “is likely the most complex investigation ever prosecuted by the Department of Justice.” Prosecutors have termed the case “unprecedented” in scope.
More than 440 persons have been charged with various offenses related to the disturbance, including disruptive behaviors, breaching prohibited areas, but none has been charged with sedition to date.
According to the Department of Justice, more than 125 people have been charged with assaulting, obstructing, or blocking police or workers, with at least 35 of them facing charges of using a lethal or dangerous weapon. In addition, over 140 policemen were attacked during the riot.
About 30 people have been charged with conspiracy, which means they organized with others to break the law. Among them, 16 Oath Keepers were accused together in a single conspiracy case.
A regulation against damage to public property has been used to prosecute more than 25 individuals. The government claimed that three of the defendants’ actions amounted to “terrorism” during their trial—an accusation that is not a charge but may impact their jail terms if they are proven guilty.
Several defendants have served in the military, while ten have worked as police officers.
The FBI continues to request public assistance in identifying rioters on its wanted list, as well as people suspected of assault on police and members of the media.
Senator Ron Johnson has written two letters to the interim Capitol Police chief that appear to doubt official statements that Officer Brian Sicknick’s death was connected to the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol, sparking a verbal spat with the department.
A small number of Capitol riot suspects have been charged with carrying guns, including at least three in the federal criminal inquiry. However, guns were not the only danger. Tasers, tomahawk axes, crowbars, flagpoles, a knife, an ice axe, a firework, a stun gun, baseball bats, fire extinguishers, a wooden club, and chemical spray are among the weapons in possession of 39 defendants, according to court records examined by CBS News.
Former President Donald Trump has urged a federal judge to dismiss a lawsuit brought by Democratic Congressman Eric Swalwell accusing him of instigating a riot on Jan. 6.