Samuel Christopher Montoya, a Texas resident who has done work for the far-right propaganda and extremism-centered media outlet known as InfoWars, has been arrested over his participation in the January rioting at the Capitol. While at the Capitol, Montoya — among other actions — recorded video footage of the police shooting of Ashli Babbitt, who was climbing through a shattered pane of glass on her way towards lawmakers when an officer fired. Montoya might like to characterize his actions at the Capitol as fundamentally journalistic in nature — but he recorded and shared himself gleefully celebrating the rioting while inside of the Capitol.
At one point during 44 minutes of video footage that he captured, Montoya turned his camera towards himself and said, “It feels good to be in the Capitol baby!” At another point, he added, “I’m sure these officers are scared, but we’re here, we’re here to just show that we’ve had enough. We’ve had enough.” The day after the rioting, Capitol Police officer Brian Sicknick, who had been assaulted by the Trump supporters at the Capitol, died, and some 140 officers were injured. Montoya’s demented disregard for the reality of what was happening doesn’t erase that reality.
Montoya’s charges now include “entering a restricted building, disorderly and disruptive conduct in a Capitol building, impeding passage through the Capitol and ‘parading, demonstrating or picketing in a Capitol building,'” as explained by local Texas news outlet and ABC affiliate KVUE. Montoya was arrested on Tuesday, and he was scheduled to appear in court on Wednesday. He is one of hundreds of Trump supporters who have faced federal criminal charges over their participation in the rioting.
On Wednesday, federal District Judge Amit Mehta ruled that another one of those many defendants, Kenneth Harrelson, would be kept in jail ahead of his trial, which doesn’t appear to be scheduled yet. If convicted of the charges that he is currently facing, which include “conspiracy to defraud the United States, obstruction of an official proceeding and destruction of government property” according to a March report, Harrelson could face up to 36 years in prison.
Now: Kenneth Harrelson, charged in the Oath Keepers' conspiracy on Jan. 6, will stay in jail pending trial. Judge cited the govt's evidence that he was involved in stashing weapons outside of DC for a "quick reaction force" and was "actively" looking for lawmakers in the Capitol
— Zoe Tillman (@ZoeTillman) April 14, 2021