Feds Slap Florida Man With Felony Charges For Detonating Explosive During Trump’s Riot

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Federal authorities have arrested and charged a man in his 30s from Florida who is suspected of detonating an explosive during the Trump-incited attack on the Capitol in early 2021 as Congressional leaders sought to formally certify the outcome of the 2020 presidential election.

The defendant, Daniel Ball, is facing an array of unsurprisingly serious criminal charges. The list includes assaulting, resisting, or impeding law enforcement using a deadly or dangerous weapon and what was summarized in a federal press release as using fire or an explosive to commit any felony. Federal investigators were evidently unable to conclusively establish identifying details for the explosive that Ball used, although there is video footage of the incident, and a recap from the Justice Department noted a group of officers was injured. Ball set off the charge, whatever nature it had, in the Capitol’s Lower West Terrace tunnel, which has repeatedly figured in criminal cases over some of the most serious violence seen that day.

Ball also went into the Capitol building itself and at one point retrieved a broken piece of a wooden window shutter that could obviously have been used as a weapon. Improvised weapons, whether stolen from police or otherwise pieced together, were repeatedly used by the crowd. The metal bike racks meant for crowd control before the riot unfolded were among the items used in such fashion.

Ball entered the Capitol structures about an hour after the building was first breached, as police — vastly outnumbered by rioters — struggled to reclaim control. His charges were formally announced by the U.S. Attorney’s office in Washington, D.C., on Tuesday — over two years after the riot originally took place. New arrests have also been seen in other cases, as Trump continues his support of riot participants. During a recent campaign swing through New Hampshire, Trump embraced (literally) a woman who participated in the violence and later faced charges and jail-time, and he offered encouraging words. Trump has also called for releasing detainees from the riot.