Owen Shroyer, a host on the far-right news platform InfoWars, has been charged by the US District Court in Columbia for allegedly entering ‘restricted grounds’ during the attack on the Capitol building in January.
Court documents claim there is video and photo footage of Shroyer, presenter of The War Room with Owen Shroyer on the website owned by conspiracist Alex Jones, “in the restricted area” of the Capitol on 6 January, which is against federal law.
The complaint, filed earlier this week, reads: “There is probable cause to believe that Shroyer violated [the US Code], which makes it a crime to knowingly enter or remain in any restricted building or grounds without lawful authority to do; and … engage in disorderly or disruptive conduct … so that, such conduct, in fact, impedes or disrupts the orderly conduct of government business or official functions; or attempts or conspires to do so.
“There is also probable cause to believe that Shroyer violated [a regulation] which makes it a crime to willingly and knowingly utter loud, threatening, or abusive language, or engage in disorderly or disruptive conduct, at any place in the Grounds or in any of the Capitol Buildings with the intent to impede, disrupt, or disturb the orderly conduct of a session of Congress or either House of Congress.”
According to the court, Shroyer can be heard in one video saying to a crowd of people: “Today we march for the Capitol because on this historic January 6, 2021, we have to let our congressmen and women know, and we have to let Mike Pence know, they stole the election, we know they stole it, and we aren’t going to accept it!”
Speaking about the complaint during a broadcast on InfoWars, Shroyer said: “A couple of hours ago, I was informed by my attorney that there is a warrant out for my arrest, with allegations involving January 6, and I would have to turn myself in Monday morning.
“I plan on declaring innocence of these charges, because I am.
“I’m not going to comment any further on this. I’m not going to take any questions on this today.”
It isn’t the first time that Shroyer has faced charges in relation to alleged actions on US Capitol grounds. In December 2019, he was arrested after he shouted and disrupted a session of the House Judiciary Committee – according to court documents.
In February last year, Shroyer reportedly entered into an agreement not to “utter loud, threatening or abusive language, or to engaging in any disorderly or disruptive conduct, at any place upon the United States Capitol Grounds”, or “parade, demonstrate, or picket within any of the Capitol Buildings”. This was in addition to carrying out 32 hours of community service.
However, the court claims that Shroyer had not carried out the community service, or reported its completion, by 6 January, meaning the agreement about his presence on US Capitol grounds still applied.
Shroyer’s counsel reportedly claimed that this was finished, but the authorities argue that only 30 hours of community service was carried out after 6 January.