Jan. 6 Defendant Captured After His Alleged Internet Searches Implicate Him


Authorities have arrested an individual identified by Washington NBC affiliate KING 5 as the 18th person from their state accused of involvement in the violence at the Capitol on January 6, 2021.

The defendant, Matthew Lawrence Stickney, is facing allegations of evident misdemeanors in his new criminal case, and he was also accused of entering the Capitol building itself, a subset of individuals who joined the day’s chaos upon whom prosecutors have focused.

Charging authorities have also singled out individuals believed to have perpetrated physical violence against police, isolating both these groups from the broader array of individuals who simply crossed restricted perimeters established at the Capitol complex. (The fact prosecutors have worked in such a manner should itself dispel the right-wing conspiracy theories of political motive behind charges that have been brought in connection to that day.)

KING 5, the NBC affiliate, also recapped some potentially revealing internet search history that authorities found when looking into this defendant. “The criminal complaint mentioned several Google searches believed to be made on his phone, including “how do i take my gun with me on a flight,” “boy that escalated quickly,” and “can i bring a gas mask on a plane,”” the news report explained. The phrase in the middle was apparently searched in the hours after the Capitol rioting began and references a popular movie, suggesting that Stickney was looking up online content to showcase his reactions to what happened.

Stickney’s other search history, as alleged by prosecutors, also seems to implicate him in the day’s events. Early the following morning, for instance, it’s alleged that he searched “hands burning from pepper spray.” Meanwhile, other notable developments recently seen in criminal cases from the Capitol riot include one defendant allegedly discussing his actions that very day via a dating app, as prosecutors laid it out. This defendant pleaded guilty to a felony criminal offense after using multiple weapons (though not firearms) against police that day.