John Schaefer, a musician and oath keeper, pleaded guilty to the charges and will assist investigators.
A member of a right-wing organization Oath Keepers The militia group on Friday pleaded guilty to being the first person to take part in the capital riots in the United States, signaling a new phase in the investigation into the deadly January attack on the seat of American democracy.
John Schaefer, a local from Indiana and founder of the band Iced Earth, pleaded guilty to two felony counts of tampering with a 2020 election certificate and breaking into a restricted building.
Iced Earth singer and bassist left the band in February.
During a hearing in federal court in Washington, D.C., U.S. District Judge Amit Mehta said the 53-year-old Schaefer had no previous criminal record and had voluntarily contacted authorities shortly after the Capitol riots.
The judge indicated that Schaefer was involved in negotiations with government investigators and agreed to release him from custody in recognition of his case through another hearing in mid-June.
Schaefer is among hundreds of supporters of former President Donald Trump who stormed the capital in an attempt to overturn the results of the November election. The rioters fought the police, broke windows and sent fleeing lawyers for safety.
Including five people Capitol Police Officer Brian Cicnic, died in the violence.
Prosecutors said Schaefer wore a tactical vest and carried a bear spray resistant when he joined the attack on the Capitol 100 days ago.
A lawyer for Schaefer agreed at Friday’s hearing that Schaefer had entered the capital that day because he was preparing for the approval of the Electoral College vote for Congressman Joe Biden.
When filed in court, prosecutors said Schaefer, who took the pictures at the time Capital riots Wearing a cap with the engineer of the right-wing Oath Keepers, “one of the rioters who sprayed U.S. Capitol police officers with ‘bear spray’.”
Oath Keepers have joined others in Trump’s orbit, Including Roger Stone, Longtime supporter and friend of the former president.
Prosecutors said Schaffer was “captured and captured on surveillance video” carrying a bear spray and was described as “verbally abusing Capitol police officers inside the Capitol building.”
More than 400 people have been arrested and charged with involvement in the violence. The most serious allegations are attacks, conspiracies and obstructions to Congress or law enforcement.