West Virginia Republican lawmaker Derrick Evans has been charged with entering a restricted area of the US Capitol after he recorded himself storming the building during a riot earlier this week along with other violent pro-Trump protesters.
Ken Kohl, a top deputy prosecutor in Washington, announced the charge against Evans on a call in which he presented dozens of new charges against the lawmaker.
He is among the 15 people who have been charged at the federal level so far. It includes an Arkansas man who was photographed with his feet up on the desk inside the office of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Another man found with 11 Molotov cocktails along with an assault rifle and two handguns in his truck is also facing federal charges.
'Thank You, Mr Trump'
Television station WSAZ posted a video on social media showing the FBI agents escorting the handcuffed lawmaker from his home. In the footage, a woman who identified herself as Evans' grandmother told a reporter, "He [Evans] is a fine man. And thank you, Mr. Trump, for invoking a riot at the White House."
She probably meant the Capitol, not the White House, while talking to the reporter. However, in the video, which was taken on Friday, January 8, Evans was seen being put inside a car before being taken to the courthouse.
The lawmaker made a Facebook live video while entering the Capitol building on the day of the riot. In that video, he said, "We're in! We're in, baby!"
According to his lawyers, Evans was acting as a member of the media but no evidence was found to support those claims. West Virginia governor Jim Justice, a member of the GOP, has called for the resignation of the lawmaker.
A family friend of Evans, Wayne Williamson, said: "Derrick made a bad choice but I think some of that choice was brought on by some of the people that were poking and gouging."
"Derrick's now in trouble and those people are going to be sitting at home watching it on TV and it really (upsets me) that my friend is going to be in trouble," he added.
Who Was in Pelosi's Office?
Police arrested the man who was photographed inside Pelosi's office, sitting with his foot on a desk at the US Capitol while a pro-Trump mob rampaged the hall of Congress. The man was identified as Richard Barnett.
The 60-year-old Barnett was taken into custody in his home state on federal charges of entering and remaining in a restricted zone, violent entry and theft of public property, said a Department of Justice official. He is being held in the Washington County Detention Center in Fayetteville, Arkansas.
A New York Times reporter tweeted that he spoke with Barnett after his stunt in Pelosi's office. In the video, he said, "I left a quarter on her desk."