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Press Release

Colorado Man Sentenced to Prison for Assaulting Law Enforcement During Jan. 6 Capitol Breach

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Columbia

            WASHINGTON – A Colorado man was sentenced to prison today for assaulting law enforcement during the breach of the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021. His actions and the actions of others disrupted a joint session of the U.S. Congress convened to ascertain and count the electoral votes related to the 2020 presidential election.

            Jonathan David Grace, 49, of Colorado Springs, Colorado, was sentenced to 24 months in prison, 3 years of supervised release, and ordered to pay $5,000 in fines and $2,000 in restitution by U.S. District Court Judge Reggie B. Walton. On Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2023, Grace pleaded guilty to a felony charge of assaulting, resisting, or impeding certain officers.

            According to court documents, Grace traveled from his residence in Colorado Springs, Colorado, to Washington, D.C., to attend the former President's "Stop the Steal" rally on Jan. 6, 2021. After attending the rally, Grace marched to the U.S. Capitol and entered the restricted area of the grounds at the West Front. Tear gas and other chemical irritants filled the air, emergency warning systems blared into the crowd, and the line of police officers spread across the West Front were under constant attack from the mob.

            Rioters at the West Front eventually overwhelmed police and caused officers to retreat to the Lower West Terrace and escape into the nearest entrance to the Capitol building, a narrow hallway known as the Tunnel, created by the construction of the Inauguration stage and the site of some of the most violent attacks against law enforcement on January 6th.

            After making it through the crowds on the West Front, Grace made his way to the Lower West Terrace Tunnel. By the time Grace arrived, rioters had been fighting with police officers for about thirty minutes. Court documents say that rioters strategically circulated in and out of the Tunnel to keep "fresh bodies" in the fight. At about 3:11 p.m., Grace entered the Tunnel and remained there, fighting police officers, for nearly an hour. Some of the worst violence against police officers in the Tunnel occurred during this period. Inside the Tunnel, Grace joined a collective "Heave! Ho!" effort, which was a coordinated push against officers in the Tunnel. Rhythmically yelling "Heave! Ho!" as their signal and locking arms or bodies with each other, the rioters would move backward in unison before rocking and pushing forward together. Grace put his head down and used his body weight to forcefully push in unison with the rioters against the police officers. Court documents say that as Grace and the rioters thrust their collective body weight into the officers, one officer could be heard screaming in pain as he was smashed between a shield and a metal door frame.

            After a prolonged forceful pushing effort, officers temporarily gained control of the Tunnel and forced Grace and other rioters to exit. Grace remained near the Tunnel only to reenter at about 3:15 p.m. He then made his way to the front of the mob of rioters and joined others in additional pushing efforts against law enforcement. According to court documents, Grace pushed against police with other rioters while the mob inside the Tunnel aggressively yelled commands like,  “Let us in!” and “Whose House? Our House!”

           Grace and the mob continued to push against the police until about 3:18 p.m. when he and others were again expelled from the Tunnel. Grace remained near the mouth of the Tunnel as rioters continued to engage in violent acts against police and watched as rioters dragged a Metropolitan Police Department officer out of the Tunnel and attacked him.

           Grace then again joined other rioters who resumed pushing against the police line. As police attempted to clear the Tunnel of rioters fully, Grace remained at the front of the mob, fighting with officers and using his body to maintain ground. Court documents say that Grace held onto the Tunnel archway, turned his back to the officers, and resisted the officers' pushing. Grace also forcefully pushed into the officers, making physical contact. He finally retreated after being sprayed by police with a chemical irritant.

           The FBI arrested Grace on March 30, 2023, in Colorado.

            This case was prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Columbia and the Department of Justice National Security Division's Counterterrorism Section. Valuable assistance was provided by the U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Colorado.

            This case was investigated by the FBI's Denver and Washington Field Offices, which identified Grace as #233 in its seeking information photos. Valuable assistance was provided by the U.S. Capitol Police and the Metropolitan Police Department.

           In the 36 months since Jan. 6, 2021, more than 1,265 individuals have been charged in nearly all 50 states for crimes related to the breach of the U.S. Capitol, including more than 440 individuals charged with assaulting or impeding law enforcement, a felony. The investigation remains ongoing.

Anyone with tips can call 1-800-CALL-FBI (800-225-5324) or visit

Updated January 30, 2024

Violent Crime
Press Release Number: 24-72