Defendant Came to Washington, D.C. “For The War”
WASHINGTON – A California man pleaded guilty today to a felony charge for his actions during the breach of the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021. His actions and the actions of others disrupted a joint session of the U.S. Congress convened to ascertain and count the electoral votes related to the 2020 presidential election.
Jorge Riley, 45, of Sacramento, California, pleaded guilty in the District of Columbia to obstruction of an official proceeding, a felony. U.S. District Court Judge Amit P. Mehta scheduled a sentencing hearing for September 6, 2023.
According to court documents, on Jan. 6, 2021, the defendant attended the “Stop the Steal” rally taking place in Washington, D.C. On December 31, 2020, the defendant purchased a “6 Ninja Tactical Combat Hunting Kunai Throwing Knife Set” and later posted on Facebook, “I just bought new kanai throwing knives and am going to do what my president asks” and “I’m going for the war.” The defendant later posted on Facebook, “Do you really not get what is going to happen on the 6th? I absolutely am looking forward to that and NO MATTER WHAT THERE IS NOTHING THAT CAN STOP IT!!!!” On January 6, 2021, the defendant marched with others to the Capitol building and posted on Facebook a video of him and others with the Capitol building in the foreground and added, “There’s 100’s of thousands of people marching on the Nation’s Capitol!!!” and “Hey we’re storming the Capitol…what are you doing?”
From January 6 through January 8, 2021, the defendant posted on Facebook over 150 messages, photographs, and videos (saved in an album titled, “Who’s House”) that detailed the defendant’s actions in Washington, D.C. on January 6, 2021, and showed the defendant inside the United States Capitol building. At approximately 2:22 PM, the defendant unlawfully entered the United States Capitol building through the Senate Wing Doors. Inside, the defendant was part of a mob that pushed past law enforcement officers and through hallways, outside Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi’s Office, balconies, Statuary Hall, and the Rotunda. At approximately 3:22 PM, the defendant exited the Capitol building through the East Rotunda lobby. After exiting the Capitol building, the defendant stood on the east Capitol steps and stated in a recorded video, “It was mostly a peaceful, physical takeover of the Capitol … We stopped the steal because they were in there and they weren’t going to stop the steal, so we stopped the steal, we took our country back.”
On the evening of January 6, 2021, the defendant posted on Facebook, “What do you do after you just got done taking your National Capitol back?” The defendant later posted, “I can sleep on the plane I guess . . . or in jail when I land?!?” The defendant knew at the time he entered the U.S. Capitol Building that he did not have permission to enter the building. The defendant obstructed, influenced, and impeded an official proceeding,
Obstruction of an official proceeding carries a statutory maximum sentence of 20 years in prison, as well as potential financial penalties. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.
This case is being prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia and the Department of Justice National Security Division’s Counterterrorism Section. Valuable assistance was provided by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of California.
The case is being investigated by the FBI’s Sacramento and Washington Field Offices. Valuable assistance was provided by the Metropolitan Police Department and the U.S. Capitol Police.
In the 26 months since Jan. 6, 2021, more than 999 individuals have been arrested in nearly all 50 states for crimes related to the breach of the U.S. Capitol, including more than 320 individuals charged with assaulting or impeding law enforcement. The investigation remains ongoing.
Anyone with tips can call 1-800-CALL-FBI (800-225-5324) or visit tips.fbi.gov.