Florida Man Pleads Guilty to Charges of Conspiracy and Obstruction Following Jan. 6 Capitol Breach
Defendant is First in a Sixteen-Person, Oath-Keeper-Affiliated Conspiracy Case to Cooperate and Plead Guilty Arising from Jan. 6 Capitol Breach
A Florida man pleaded guilty today to crimes related to the breach of the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, which disrupted a joint session of the U.S. Congress that was in the process of ascertaining and counting the electoral votes related to the presidential election.
Graydon Young, 54, of Englewood, pleaded guilty to counts one and two of the fourth superseding indictment issued on May 26, which charged him with conspiracy and obstruction of justice. Young faces up to 20 years in prison for obstruction of Congress and up to five years in prison for conspiracy as well as three years of supervised release and a $250,000 fine.
According to court documents, Young coordinated with others – some of whom are affiliated with the Oath Keepers – in advance of his activities in Washington on Jan. 6. For example, Young and others discussed the need to maintain operational security and, accordingly, used encrypted messaging applications to communicate. On Jan. 4, Young flew from Florida to North Carolina and drove with at least one co-conspirator to the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area the next day. On the morning of Jan. 6, he met up with some of the co-conspirators at an event near the White House. In the early afternoon, Young marched with some of the co-conspirators toward the U.S. Capitol.
Young admitted to unlawfully entering the restricted grounds of the U.S. Capitol around 2:28 p.m. and, around 2:40 p.m., joining co-conspirators to walk up the east side of the building. Young and others walked in a “stack” formation, with each person keeping a hand on the shoulder of the person in front. Young believed that when he entered the building, he and the co-conspirators were trying to obstruct, influence and impede an official proceeding, specifically Congress’s certification of the Electoral College vote. Young admitted to intending to stop or delay the Congressional proceeding by intimidating and coercing government personnel who were participating in or supporting the proceeding.
Around 3:05 p.m., Young exited the Capitol and, around 4:22 p.m., posted to Facebook, “We stormed and got inside.” Young deleted his Facebook account two days later.
The case is being prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia and the Department of Justice National Security Division’s Counterterrorism Section. Substantial assistance was provided by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Florida.
The case is being investigated by the FBI’s Washington and Tampa Field Offices.
In the 150 days since Jan. 6, approximately 465 individuals have been arrested on charges related to the Jan. 6 Capitol breach, including over 130 individuals charged with assaulting or impeding law enforcement. The investigation remains ongoing.
Anyone with tips can call 1-800-CALL-FBI (800-225-5324) or visit tips.fbi.gov.
The charges contained in any criminal complaint or indictment are allegations. The defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.