Arrests mount 6 months after attack on the Capitol

Six months since a mob stormed the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, more than 500 people have been arrested in what the Justice Department has said is one of the largest criminal investigations in the nation’s history.

The arrests include dozens of members of the Proud Boys and the Oath Keepers, two far-right groups that prosecutors allege were involved in communication and planning before the rioting occurred.

Sixteen members of the Oath Keepers are charged with taking part in a conspiracy to interfere with the Electoral College results to certify the 2020 presidential election on Jan. 6, which members of Congress were trying to do when hundreds of people flooded into the Capitol.

Two members of the Oath Keepers have entered guilty pleas to conspiracy charges, and a federal prosecutor last week indicated that talks are ongoing with 12 other members of the group, in an effort to reach more plea agreements.

Members of the Oath Keepers face some of the most serious charges. At least 100 people also face charges for assaulting federal officers. More than 140 officers were injured in the attack.
Most of the others face misdemeanor charges for illegally entering the Capitol.

They include an Indiana woman who was the first person to be sentenced. Anna Morgan-Lloyd was ordered last month to serve three years of probation and perform 120 hours of community service, as well as pay $500 in restitution.

While federal authorities have charged hundreds of people, they are still trying to identify many others who entered the Capitol illegally.

The FBI posted a “Most Wanted” list of people sought in connection with the violence at the Capitol. The agency also released 11 new videos of suspects in violent assaults on federal officers during the riots and are asking for the public’s help to identify them.

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As law enforcement continues to make arrests and the court system deals with those charged, a House select committee is preparing an investigation into the attack.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has named eight members to the committee, including Rep. Liz Cheney. The Wyoming Republican was one of only two House GOP lawmakers to vote for creation of the panel, along with Rep. Adam Kinzinger, of Illinois.

The committee is chaired by Mississippi Democrat Rep. Bennie Thompson, who is also the chair of the House Homeland Security Committee.

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy can name five members to the committee.

Among the Democrats who will serve on the panel is Rep. Jamie Raskin, of Maryland, who served as an impeachment manager during the second impeachment trial of former President Donald Trump.

Republicans charge that the select committee will be partisan and seek to reach conclusions damaging to the GOP. Senate Republicans earlier blocked a separate proposal to create a bipartisan, 9/11-style commission.

Raskin said it’s important to learn the truth about what happened.

“We need to figure out who organized the violence on January 6th — how did they organize it and why did they organize it?” he said. “Because we need to defend our democracy with everything we’ve got.”

Rep. Elaine Luria, a Virginia Democrat, is also one of the members of the panel.

The House is now on break, but Pelosi has indicated she wants the select committee to begin its work as soon as possible.

Lawmakers on various standing committees have also been examining various aspects of security around the Capitol. Fencing that went up around the perimeter after Jan. 6 is expected to come down later this week.

A wider perimeter of fencing around the Capitol and nearby roads was taken down earlier this year.

Mitchell Miller

Mitchell Miller has worked at WTOP since 1996, as a producer, editor, reporter and Senior News Director. After working "behind the scenes," coordinating coverage and reporter coverage for years, Mitchell moved back to his first love -- reporting. He is now WTOP's Capitol Hill reporter.

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