WASHINGTON – Two off-duty police officers from Rocky Mount, Virginia, were charged Tuesday in federal court in the District of Columbia in connection with the riots at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, the United States District Attorney's Office in D.C. announced.
Jacob Fracker and Thomas Robertson were charged by complaint with one count of knowingly entering or remaining in any restricted building or grounds without lawful authority and one count of violent entry and disorderly conduct on Capitol grounds. They were both arrested in Virginia on January 13.
Officials allege that during the riot, Fracker and Robertson were photographed in the Capitol building making an obscene gesture in front of the John Stark statue.
On social media, Robertson is quoted as saying, “CNN and the Left are just mad because we actually attacked the government who is the problem and not some random small business ... The right IN ONE DAY took the f***** U.S. Capitol. Keep poking us.” He also stated that he was “proud” of the photo on an Instagram post that was shared to Facebook, because he was “willing to put skin in the game.” On Facebook, Fracker posted a comment that read, “Lol to anyone who’s possibly concerned about the picture of me going around... Sorry I hate freedom? …Not like I did anything illegal…y’all do what you feel you need to.”
The post has since been deleted, the U.S. Attorney's Office says.
These cases are being prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia and the Counterterrorism Section of the DOJ’s National Security Division, with assistance from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Virginia. The cases are being investigated by the FBI’s Washington Field Office and the United States Capitol Police.
The U.S. Attorney's Office reiterates that it is only alleged that Fracker and Robinson have done what is outlined in court documents and that they are presumed innocent until proven guilty.
The ATF and FBI are still urging the public to report suspected use of explosive devices or violent, destructive acts associated with the recent unrest. Anyone who has information can call 1-888-ATF-TIPS (1-888-283-8477), email ATFTips@atf.gov or submit an anonymous tip online via ReportIt.com.
The FBI is also looking for people who may have incited or promoted violence of any kind. Anyone who has digital material or tips can call 1-800-CALL-FBI (800-225-5324) or submit images or videos at fbi.gov/USCapitol.