capitol riot

Californian Charged With Assaulting Cops in Capitol Breach

“You’re protecting communists!” McHugh shouted at officers, prosecutors said

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A Northern California man was charged Friday with using a weapon to assault officers guarding the U.S. Capitol during the Jan. 6 insurrection.

Body camera footage caught Sean Michael McHugh, 34, of Auburn pushing a large metal sign into a line of uniformed officers during the riot and spraying an unknown, yellow chemical on police, prosecutors said.

“You’re protecting communists!” McHugh shouted at officers, prosecutors said. “There is a second amendment behind us, what are you going to do then?”

The crowd that stormed the Capitol was trying to disrupt the certification of Joe Biden’s presidential victory. Many had come from a rally by then-President Donald Trump, who refused to concede defeat and continued to assert without evidence that the election had been stolen.

Hundreds of rowdy and violent Trump supporters broke through police barricades and overwhelmed officers. Some carried pepper spray, baseball bats and other weapons as they forced their way into the Capitol with chants of “Hang Mike Pence” and “Stop the Steal.”

More than 400 people have been charged in the Capitol breach, including 125 charged with assaulting or impeding police.

McHugh was arrested Thursday and held in custody after a hearing Friday in Sacramento federal court. He did not enter a plea and faces a bail hearing June 1.

Assistant Federal Defender Lexi Negin declined to comment on McHugh's arrest.

McHugh faces charges that include assault on law enforcement with a deadly or dangerous weapon, obstruction of justice and physical violence on Capitol grounds.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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