Already, dozens have been arrested over the January 6 riot, but the FBI is now looking at whether there was a deeper plot to kidnap or harm members of Congress, sources told the Washington Post.
‘We’re not looking at this as a grand conspiracy, but we are interested in learning what people would do with things like zip ties,’ said one law enforcement official.
At least two mob members, one of them a retired Air Force officer, were spotted on the Senate floor carrying zip-tie handcuffs, while another was caught with a pistol on the Capitol grounds.
At least two individuals were spotted in the Senate chamber carrying heavy-duty flex cuffs. The FBI is investigating whether there was any plot to take lawmakers hostage
This man was spotted in the Senate press gallery with a bundle of flex-cuffs, heavy duty restraints used by law enforcement in mass arrests
Lawmakers evacuate the floor as the mob tries to break into the House Chamber on Wenesday
The FBI is investigating whether any Capitol rioters plotted to kidnap or harm lawmakers. Above, tear gas is fired at supporters of President Trump who stormed the Capitol building
In pursuing the investigation, the FBI will be pouring through social media posts, emails and phones to determine whether anyone among the rioters made specific plans to harm lawmakers.
Although no senators or representatives were injured in the attack, federal prosecutors could still bring conspiracy charges if a plot were uncovered.
Such was the case recently in Michigan, where militia members were charged with plotting to kidnap Governor Gretchen Whitmer, a Democrat.
Among those who participated in the riot was an Air Force veteran who invaded the Senate floor and roamed Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s office dressed in combat gear and carrying zip-tie cuffs.
Retired Lieutenant Colonel Larry Rendall Brock Jr, 53, carried zip ties in the Capitol
Retired Lieutenant Colonel Larry Rendall Brock Jr, 53, admitted to being the man in the videos and photos inside the Capitol.
The father-of-three, who now lives in Dallas, was pictured on the Senate floor Wednesday after the group had broken through barricades, pushed back law enforcement and sent lawmakers fleeing for safety.
Images show him wearing a combat helmet, body armor and a vinyl tag with the Punisher skull on – a symbol adopted by white supremacists and believers of conspiracy theory QAnon.
He carried zip-tie handcuffs and appeared to be speaking with fellow rioters, several of which were dressed in MAGA caps.
Brock, who was in the Air Force for more than two decades and now works for an aviation company, was also seen in footage, shot by ITV News, appearing to exit Nancy Pelosi’s office – which was vandalized and looted in the chaos.
Brock, who was in the Air Force for more than two decades and now works for an aviation company, was also seen in footage, shot by ITV News, appearing to exit Nancy Pelosi’s office
Brock’s family members and a former Air Force comrade have painted a concerning picture of the veteran – one of a man who has become increasingly radical and been influenced by white supremacy in recent years.
Bill Leake, who worked alongside Brock in the Air Force for 10 years, told The New Yorker he had fallen out of touch with Brock because he had ‘gotten extreme’.
He said Brock, who was nicknamed Torch in the force, became obsessed with Trump and with following ‘the alternative-news-source world’.
‘Torch got all in on Trump. He went all in on the alternative-news-source world,’ said Leake.
‘He actually believes liberals and Democrats are a threat to the country. You can see how the logical conclusion to that is, “We’ve gotta take over”.’
Investigators will also consider whether there was any concerted plot targeting Vice President Mike Pence, who enraged Trump and his loyalists by refusing to illegally intervene in Congress to overthrow the election.
As the attack unfolded, Trump took to Twitter to vent fury at Pence, a message that quickly spread among the president’s followers at the Capitol.
A noose is seen on makeshift gallows as supporters of President Trump stormed on the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday. A Reuters’ photographer covering the riot claimed he heard at least three Trump supporters speak about hanging VP Mike Pence from a tree as a ‘traitor’
Pence angered Trump and his supporters earlier this week after pushing back against the president’s incorrect claim that the VP could put a stop to the certification of Joe Biden’s win
Pictured, a duffle bag of flex cuffs remains at the northern entrance door to the U.S. Capitol building after the Trump rioters on Wednesday. They hunted for Pence and Pelosi
A Reuters’ photographer covering Wednesday’s riot claimed he heard at least three Trump supporters speak about hanging Pence from a tree as a ‘traitor’.
‘Many more were just talking about how the VP should be executed,’ tweeted Jim Bourg, the Reuters News Pictures Editor in DC.
Pictures from D.C. on Wednesday revealed that a noose was erected on a wooden frame on the West Front of the Capitol by the president’s mob.
Rioters were also spotted stalking the halls of the Capitol chanting ‘Where is Pence? Where is Pence?’
The FBI now has agents in all 56 field offices nationwide pursuing leads related to the attack.
‘Just because you’ve left the DC region, you can still expect a knock on the door if we find out you were part of criminal activity in the Capitol,’ said Steven M. D’Antuono, head of the FBI’s Washington Field Office.
Pictured, flex cuffs still hung from the northern entrance door from when Capitol Police attempted to secure it from a pro-Trump mob on Wednesday afternoon
In this image from video, lawmakers evacuate the Senate floor as rioters gain entry
More than 80 rioters have already been arrested and 55 are being pursued on federal charges. The DoJ announced on a call with reporters Friday that 15 people have now been federally charged.
Adam Johnson, 36, was arrested by federal marshals in Florida on Friday
This includes 60-year-old Richard Barnett – the man who put his feet on Nancy Pelosi’s desk and left her a threatening note before boasting about it after he returned to the crowds outside.
Barnett, who proudly referred to himself as a white nationalist on social media, was charged with unlawful entry.
Adam Johnson, 36, was also arrested by federal marshals in Florida on Friday and is currently being held at the Pinellas County Jail, according to arrest records.
The stay-at-home dad looted and smiled for a photo as he made off with Nancy Pelosi’s lectern. The charges against Johnson are still pending.
Lonnie Coffman, 70, was also arrested after police found his red GMC pick-up truck near the RNC – where a pipe bomb was left.
Dozens more participants in the mob attack are still yet to be identified.
Adam Johnson, 36, was also arrested by federal marshals in Florida on Friday and is currently being held at the Pinellas County Jail, according to arrest records
On Friday, the FBI released new photos of 10 additional MAGA mob rioters inside the Capitol who are wanted in relation to the violent siege.
Federal authorities are seeking the public’s help in tracking down those pictured for making ‘unlawful entry’ into the Capitol building.
The protesters were riled up by Trump, Giuliani and Donald Trump Jr. during a rally near the White House and told to head to Capitol Hill where lawmakers were scheduled to confirm Biden’s presidential victory.
A violent mob stormed the Capitol, breaking through police barricades and smashing windows to enter the building.
Lawmakers were forced to go into hiding for several hours as Capitol police grappled to take back control while the mob defecated in the Senate and House, invaded Nancy Pelosi’s office and looted items potentially including state secrets.
One female Trump supporter, US Air Force veteran Ashli Babbitt, was shot dead by Capitol Police as she tried to climb through a window.
Three other Trump supporters died after ‘medical emergencies’ related to the breach and Capitol Police Officer Brian D. Sicknick died Thursday from injuries sustained in the attack after the thug allegedly hit him over the head with a fire extinguisher.