Federal authorities on Thursday arrested a Colorado Springs man who prosecutors say was part of a group of Jan. 6 rioters who violently pushed against police officers desperately trying to defend the U.S. Capitol from the angry mob in a tunnel.
Jonathan Grace, 49, faces charges including felony civil disorder. Grace appeared in U.S. District Court in Denver on Thursday. The judge ordered his release and set the terms of his pre-trial supervision, including weekly phone calls with a probation officers in Washington, D.C., but not going to Washington unless for court hearings or meeting with an attorney. His next court appearance is set for April 10.
Surveillance video shows Grace entering a tunnel where officers were lined up as they tried to beat back the mob. Grace can be seen putting his head down and using his body to push in unison with other rioters against the police line, authorities say.
As the rioters pushed, one of officers screamed in pain while being crushed between a shield and a door frame in one of the most harrowing scenes from the riot, according to court documents.
After officers at one point managed to clear rioters out of the tunnel, Grace watched as other rioters dragged a D.C. police officer out of the tunnel and brutally attacked him, authorities say. He then re-joined the rioters pushing against the police line and retreated only after officers sprayed a chemical irritant at the crowd, according to court documents.
He joins roughly 1,000 people who have charged with federal crimes in the riot that halted the certification of President Joe Biden’s victory and left dozens of police officers injured. All of the cases are being prosecuted in Washington D.C.’s federal court and authorities continue to make new arrests practically every week.
More than 540 defendants have pleaded guilty. Dozens more have been convicted by judges or juries after trials. More than 440 have been sentenced, with over half getting terms of imprisonment ranging from seven days to 10 years.
The Colorado Sun contributed to this report.