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Capitol riots: Police arrest man carrying Pelosi's lectern

Supporters of President Donald Trump riot against the Electoral College vote count on Wednesday in protest of Trump's loss to President-elect Joe Biden, prompting a lockdown of the Capitol Building. Photo by Leigh Vogel/UPI | License Photo

Jan. 9 (UPI) -- The man seen in a viral photo carrying House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's lectern during Wednesday's riot in the U.S. Capitol has been arrested.

Local residents identified the man as Adam Christian Johnson, 36, a Parrish, Fla., resident, who lives with his wife and their five children. On Friday night, authorities booked Johnson into the Pinellas County jail, where he is being held on a federal warrant.

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Johnson's social media posts, which have since been taken down, allegedly included disparaging comments about the Black Lives Matter movement and law enforcement who defended First Amendment rights, the Bradenton Herald reported.

Meanwhile, the FBI said it was looking for another man photographed in paramilitary gear, carrying five pairs of zip-tie handcuffs as he walked through the upper level of the U.S. Senate chamber Wednesday following evacuations of lawmakers and Vice President Mike Pence from the floor below.

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According to experts, he was not with security, but instead was one of the rioters.

Two counterterrorism experts told USA Today that the photographs of him reminded them of the Michigan extremist group called the Wolverine Watchmen, which has been linked to an April siege on the Michigan State Capitol and a plot to kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer from her home. The FBI announced in October that a 14th person had been arrested for the domestic terrorism plot to kidnap Whitmer.

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"Someone hung a noose out on the Mall," Malcolm Nance, a retired Navy counterterrorism intelligence officer, told USA Today.

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Nance added that his team observed people using flag poles and baseball bats as weapons.

"These guys came for action, to do damage," Nance said.

Larry Rendall Brock, Jr. 53, an Air Force veteran from North Texas, told The New Yorker he was the man seen in a photo from Wednesday's insurrection at the U.S. Capitol, who also carried zip-tie handcuffs. Brock is also seen in the photo wearing a combat helmet and tactical gear on the Senate floor.

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"The president asked for his supporters to be there to attend, and I felt like it was important, because of how much I love this country, to actually be there," Brock told The New Yorker.

Brock added that he wore the tactical gear so he wouldn't "get stabbed or hurt."

Brock's employer, Fort Worth-based Hillways, told the Dallas Morning News he no longer works for the luxury air carrier, which is part of Ross Perot Jr.'s business empire.

"We've been made obviously aware of the photos," the luxury air carrier spokesman James Fuller told the Dallas Morning News, adding that he couldn't disclose the reason Brock was no longer employed there due to company policy.

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The Capitol insurrection left five people dead, including Capitol Police officer Brian Sicknick who died Thursday from injuries sustained during the siege, a Capitol Police statement showed.

Meanwhile, CNN reported that a video from investigative outlet Status Coup, showed an officer screaming for help as he was crushed Wednesday between a door and people in the pro-Trump mob.

Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va., urged mobile carriers and social media companies to preserve content related to the riot as evidence in a letter to CEOs of 11 companies, with AT&T, Verizon, Apple, Facebook, Goodle, Twitter and Parler, being some of the companies among them.

"Messaging data to and from your subscribers that may have participated in, or assisted, those engaged in this insurrection -- and associated subscriber information -- are critical evidence in helping to bring these rioters to justice," Warner told CEOS in the letter.

On Friday, the FBI arrested one of the most visible participants in Wednesday's insurrection -- Richard Barnett of Arkansas, who was shown in video footage with his feet on Pelosi's desk.

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West Virginia Delegate-elect Derrick Evans, who used Facebook live when he joined rioters in the U.S. Capitol, was also arrested, West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice said in a Friday news conference.

Since then, Evans has resigned.

"I hereby resign as a member of the West Virginia House of Delegates, effective immediately," Evans wrote in a one-page letter to Gov. Justice Saturday that the West Virginia House of Delegates posted a link to below another statement.

"The past few days have certainly been a difficult time for my family, colleagues and myself, so I feel it's best at this point to resign my seat in the House and focus on my personal situations and those I love," Evans said in the statement. "I take full responsibility for my actions, and deeply regret any hurt, pain or embarrassment I may have caused my family, friends, constituents and fellow West Virginians. I hope this action I take today can remove any cloud of distraction from the state legislature, so my colleagues can get to work in earnest building a brighter future for our state. And more importantly, I hope it helps to begin the healing process, so we can all move forward and come together as 'One Nation, Under God.'"

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The D.C. Capitol database shows 82 unrest-related arrests so far.

Some people have also been put on leave from their jobs after alleged involvement in the insurrection.

Bradley Rukstales, CEO of marketing consulting agency Cogensia, was put on leave from his position after being arrested on charge of unlawful entry.

On Friday night, the Seattle Police Department's interim chief, Adrian Diaz, said in a statement that at least two Seattle police officers who were in Washington, D.C. during Wednesday's riot have been placed on administrative leave while the Office of Police Accountability investigates.

"The department fully supports all lawful expressions of First Amendment freedom of speech, but the violent mob and events that unfolded at the U.S. Capitol were unlawful and resulted in the death of another police officer," Diaz said in the statement. "If any SPD officers were directly involved in the insurrection at the U.S. Capitol, I will immediately terminate them."

On Saturday the Young Republicans of Oregon posted a statement to Facebook saying its co-chair, 28-year-old Kristina Malimon, had been arrested in connection with her participation in the riot.

The group said it was not aware of all the facts surrounding her arrest and that it was "inappropriate for us to comment on it."

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Malimon was charged by Washington, D.C., police with unlawful entry and curfew violation, according to Metropolitan Police Department arrest data.

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