The Keene man who admitted he entered the U.S. Capitol building during the Jan. 6 riot in Washington, D.C., was taken into federal custody Monday afternoon.
Jason Riddle, 32, was arrested in Keene without incident, according to a news release from the FBI’s Boston division. His charges, as reported Friday, are knowingly entering or remaining in a restricted building or grounds, theft of government property and disorderly conduct on Capitol grounds.
According to a criminal complaint filed against him in federal court in Washington, D.C., Riddle entered the Capitol building during the Jan. 6 riot, which started in the early afternoon and lasted through early evening, and stole wine and a book from the Senate parliamentarian’s office.
Riddle was scheduled to appear in U.S. District Court in Concord Monday afternoon, but that hearing was postponed until Tuesday at 4 p.m.
According to an affidavit filed with the complaint, written by FBI Special Agent Kevin Helson, federal authorities learned of Riddle’s involvement in the Capitol breach when multiple people contacted the FBI about an interview Riddle gave to NBC10 in Boston. During the Jan. 9 interview, Riddle admitted to going inside the Capitol because he “just had to see it,” adding that he did not regret his decision to do so.
Riddle admitted to participating in the Capitol breach in an interview with The Sentinel last month but adamantly denounced the violence that took place during the incident, which left five people dead.
The affidavit says Riddle, a former corrections officer at the Cheshire County jail and a former mail carrier, told FBI agents during a Jan. 22 interview in Keene that he followed a crowd of rioters into the Capitol and took an open bottle of wine, which he drank from as he walked around the building, and the book from the parliamentarian’s office.
He posted several photos of the incident to his Facebook page, and shortly after returning from Washington, announced that he intends to run for Cheshire County commissioner in the second district, which covers Roxbury, Keene and Marlborough.
Federal investigators have devoted considerable time and resources to identifying and prosecuting rioters who breached the Capitol and threatened lawmakers, according to The Washington Post.
U.S. authorities have opened case files on more than 400 potential suspects and obtained more than 500 grand jury subpoenas and search warrants in the sprawling investigation, the acting U.S. attorney in D.C., Michael Sherwin, told reporters Jan. 26. A nationwide manhunt has resulted in 135 arrests and 150 federal criminally charged cases.
More charges could follow.
Law enforcement officials have estimated that roughly 800 people entered the Capitol without authorization, The Post reported last month.