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Springfield man charged with assault on police at Capitol insurrection

The U.S. Capitol building (staff photo by Jay Westcott)

A Springfield man assaulted a U.S. Capitol Police officer with a barricade during the Jan. 6, 2021 riot by supporters of former president Donald Trump, federal prosecutors allege.

Joseph Brody, 23, was arrested on Sept. 15 and faces multiple felony and misdemeanor charges, including assaulting, resisting, or impeding law enforcement officers, the U.S. Attorney’s Office in D.C. announced Tuesday (Sept. 20).

Other charges relate to interfering with law enforcement during a civil disorder, obstructing an official proceeding, occupying a restricted building, and disorderly conduct and picketing in a Capitol building.

The Department of Justice says Brody communicated and traveled with at least four other men before the insurrection, which investigators say was an attempt to stop Congress from certifying the results of the 2020 election where President Joe Biden beat Trump.

All aged 21 to 23, Thomas Carey of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; Gabriel Chase of Gainesville, Florida; Jon Lizak of Cold Spring Harbor, New York; and Paul Ewald Lovley of Halethorpe, Maryland have also been arrested and charged in the criminal complaint, filed Sept. 12.

All five men are members of the white nationalist group America First, which opposes “the demographic and cultural changes in America,” an FBI agent says in a statement of facts.

According to the agent, CCTV footage showed the men entering the Capitol at 2:16 p.m. In the next 35 minutes, they entered House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s office, and Brody went on the Senate floor, where he “filmed and/or photographed the desks of U.S. Senators.”

After leaving the Capitol, the men joined other rioters who were trying to breach a door to the north end of the building:

Brody assisted another rioter in using a metal barricade against a Capitol Police officer, knocking the officer back as he attempted to secure the North Door. Brody’s associates watched as he assaulted this law enforcement officer. The group then watched the destruction of media equipment, which had been surrounded by metal barricades. While there, both Brody and Chase participated in the destruction. Brody appeared to damage a corded phone, and Chase appeared to loot a pair of headphones. Lovley joined the circle and filmed the looters and rioters.

The FBI agent says Lovley was identified first with data provided by Verizon and Google. Investigators connected an Gmail address to a PayPal account, where he paid $84.72 to a Domino’s Pizza in Maryland and received Venmo payments from the four other men.

Brody, who allegedly used the screen name “Broseph Broseph” on Venmo, visually matched a man seen at the Capitol wearing a gray suit and striped tie, the statement of facts says.

While at the Capitol, the individual also had an American flag lapel pin and a neck gaiter sewn in the pattern of the flag that he appeared to be wearing as a face mask, based on photos in the statement.

After an initial appearance in D.C. the day of his arrest, Brody was released “pending further court proceedings,” the DOJ says.

More than 265 individuals have been charged with assaulting or impeding police during the insurrection, which resulted in over 870 arrests overall, according to the Justice Department.

Investigations into the attack by the FBI and a House select committee are ongoing.

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