WASHINGTON – A Florida couple was sentenced on Monday, Nov. 20, 2023, on felony and misdemeanor charges for their actions during the breach of the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021. Their 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.
Jamie N. Buteau, 50, of Ocala, Fla., was sentenced to 22 months in prison for the felony offense of assaulting, resisting, or impeding certain officers. Jennifer Peck Buteau, 46, also of Ocala, was sentenced to 90 days on a misdemeanor count of parading, demonstrating, or picketing in a Capitol building.
The couple pleaded guilty to the charges on July 24, 2023, in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.
In addition to the prison sentence, U.S. District Court Judge Randolph D. Moss ordered Jamie Buteau to serve 24 months of supervised release and pay restitution of $2000.
According to the government’s evidence, the Buteaus traveled to Washington, D.C., on Jan. 6, 2021, to protest the certification of the results of the 2020 Presidential Election. At approximately 2:25 p.m., the two entered the U.S. Capitol building through the Senate Wing Door after the door had been breached and an adjacent window broken by a crowd of rioters. Once inside, the couple moved with a large mob to a lobby separating the Crypt from the Capitol Visitors Center.
Roughly five minutes after entering the Capitol, the Buteaus were at the front of a mob that rushed to prevent police officers from pulling down a set of rolling doors that would have helped to secure parts of the Capitol building. While Jennifer Buteau and other rioters hurried to prop up the rolling doors with chairs and trashcans, Jamie Buteau went one step further; picking up a folding chair, he threw it in the direction of police, where it hit a wall and ricocheted into the arm of a U.S. Capitol Police officer. The duo then followed with the mob behind the fleeing police officers.
The Buteaus then walked around the Capitol Visitor Center despite the numerous and obvious signs that they should not be there. The couple left the Capitol building at 2:45 p.m., but they lingered on restricted Capitol grounds for 20 to 30 minutes, all the while demeaning police officers who were trying to do their jobs.
At about 2:57 p.m., after police deployed chemical irritants to disburse the rioters, Jennifer Buteau spat twice at police officers as Jamie Buteau looked on approvingly and video-recorded that encounter on his mobile telephone. Jamie Buteau later climbed atop an armored police vehicle.
The FBI arrested the pair on June 23, 2021, in Ocala.
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 Middle District of Florida.
The case was investigated by the FBI’s Washington Field Office, which identified Jamie Buteau as #188 in its seeking information photos, as well as the Metropolitan Police Department, with significant assistance provided by the U.S. Capitol Police and FBI’s Jacksonville Field Office.
In the 34 months since Jan. 6, 2021, more than 1,200 individuals have been charged in nearly all 50 states for crimes related to the breach of the U.S. Capitol, including more than 400 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 tips.fbi.gov.