Two members of a far-right nationalist group Proud Boys were indicted in federal court on Friday, January 29 for their involvement in the US Capitol riot that took place on January 6. Federal prosecutors investigating the violent riot announced their first conspiracy charges against two men that included obstructing an official proceeding and assaulting officers.
According to the Justice Department, the indictment has been filed against 43-year-old Dominic Pezzola of Rochester and 31-year-old William Pepe of Beacon both were originally charged by criminal complaint and were arrested in mid-January.
The DOJ stated that both the members of Proud Boys were indicted on Friday in federal court in the District of Columbia on charges of conspiracy, civil disorder, unlawfully entering restricted buildings or grounds and disorderly and disruptive conduct in restricted buildings or grounds.
Dominic Pezzola Had Bomb-Making Manuals
Prosecutors wrote in a memo filed in the US District Court for the District of Columbia that Pezzola "poses a serious danger to the community and a serious risk of flight". According to the court document, "His stated desire to commit further acts of violence, combined with his access to weapons-and-bomb-making manuals, is extremely concerning."
As reported, when FBI agents searched Pezzola's home after the riot, they discovered a thumb drive with several PDF files, which suggested that he had been studying the techniques of making explosives.
These files had titles like, "Explosive Dusts", "Advanced Improvised Explosives", "Ragnar's Big Book of Homemade Weapons" and "The Advanced Anarchist's Arsenal: Recipes for Improvised Incendiaries and Explosives".
However, as per AP, Pezzola is a former Marine who spent six years in the infantry. He was discharged from his duty as a corporal in 2005.
The accused allegedly fired up a cigar as a sign of "victory" after he broke into the US Capitol along with other violent Donald Trump supporters on January 6. A witness of the incident told authorities Pezzola admitted that he would have killed the Speaker of the US House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi and former Vice President Mike Pence if he had the chance.
Proud Boys Member MTA Employee
The other accused Pepe was a Metro Transit Authority employee. As per the arrest affidavit, he used sick leave to travel to Washington DC and attend the "Stop the Steal" rally on January 6.
He was photographed inside the Capitol during the riot and it was displayed on various media outlets. After his image was released, Pepe was identified and MTA immediately suspended him.
Both men from New York are the members of Proud Boys which defined itself as the "Western Chauvinists"—a group of men who refuse to apologize for creating the modern world. The group is banned from Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.