Derrick Evans, a Republican member of the state legislature in West Virginia, is now among those facing criminal charges after the violent insurrection attempt at the U.S. Capitol earlier this week in which he participated. Evans filmed his participation in the Capitol riot and shared the footage on social media, helping alert observers to his part in the violent chaos. Now, Evans has been “charged with illegally entering the Capitol,” CNBC reports. On Wednesday, Evans claimed that he was participating in the proceedings merely as an “independent member of the media,” but footage that he himself shared clearly depicts his exuberant participation in the break-in. Watch footage of Evans’s Friday arrest by FBI agents below:
#BREAKING WV Delegate Derrick Evans has been taken into federal custody.
He’s charged after allegedly entering a restricted area of the US Capitol with rioters Wednesday.
— Chad Hedrick (@WSAZChadHedrick) January 8, 2021
West Virginia House of Delegates Speaker Roger Hanshaw (R) said that Evans will need to “answer to his constituents and colleagues” for his behavior in D.C. Separately, the two U.S. Attorneys in West Virginia said that they are “prepared to enforce the Rule of Law and the laws of these United States.” Other U.S. Attorneys from other areas of the country have issued similar statements, indicating their readiness to prosecute any local residents within their respective jurisdictions who traveled to D.C. and participated in the violence.
Watch footage of Evans in the Capitol below:
— Brad McElhinny (@BradMcElhinny) January 6, 2021
Other state legislators from other areas of the country were also present in D.C. on Wednesday, when the insurrectionist rioting took place, but Evans appears to be the only one whose presence inside the Capitol building after the Trump supporters’ break-in has been confirmed. Among others, Arizona state Rep. Mark Finchem (R) posted photos of himself outside the Capitol, while incoming Nevada state Assemblywoman Annie Black (R) said that she participated in the march to the Capitol but did not enter the building, observing that participants “all had a choice when that fence came down.” Many of the participants made the choice to storm the building.
Although the organization among the Capitol rioters might be in question, their obvious intention to cause violent, destructive havoc is clear. Reuters photographer Jim Bourg, who was on the scene at the Capitol on Wednesday, said that he “heard at least 3 different rioters at the Capitol say that they hoped to find Vice President Mike Pence and execute him by hanging him from a Capitol Hill tree as a traitor.” These people are domestic terrorists, according to any reasonable estimation, who were intentionally targeting top members of the legislature — violence that Trump eventually publicly justified. Although he eventually offered a sniveling backtrack of the sentiment, he delusionally insisted on Twitter in a since-removed post that that “[these] are the things and events that happen when a sacred landslide victory is so unceremoniously & viciously stripped away from great patriots who have been badly & unfairly treated for so long.” He excused violence.
I heard at least 3 different rioters at the Capitol say that they hoped to find Vice President Mike Pence and execute him by hanging him from a Capitol Hill tree as a traitor. It was a common line being repeated. Many more were just talking about how the VP should be executed. https://t.co/fxHREouEWF
— Jim Bourg (@jimbourg) January 8, 2021