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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Columbia

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, May 11, 2022

Florida Man Pleads Guilty to Felony Charge for Offenses Committed During Jan. 6 Capitol Breach

Defendant Removed Barriers, Tussled with Officers

            WASHINGTON – A Florida man pleaded guilty today to a felony charge for his actions during the breach of the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, 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.

            Robert Flynt Fairchild, Jr., 40, of Orlando, pleaded guilty in the District of Columbia to civil disorder. According to court documents, on Jan. 6, Fairchild attended a rally at the Ellipse and headed to the Capitol. From at least 1:15 p.m. until 2:15 p.m., Fairchild was present in a crowd in the then-restricted area of the Capitol’s West Plaza. A series of metal barriers were set up by law enforcement officers to contain the crowd. Officers attempted to maintain the crowd on the other side of the barriers. Fairchild stood at the front of the crowd and walked alongside the barriers. He made multiple attempts to wrest the barriers from the officers.

            Working with the crowd, Fairchild successfully carried at least two barriers away from the line and back into the crowd, weakening the security perimeter. He also engaged in the pushing and pulling of the barriers, tussling with law enforcement. On at least one occasion, he made contact with an officer. At approximately 3:15 p.m., he illegally entered the Capitol through the Senate Wing Door. He spent several minutes in the building, including entering the Crypt, before finally exiting.

            Fairchild was arrested on Aug. 27, 2021, in Orlando. He is to be sentenced on Aug. 22, 2022.  He faces a statutory maximum of five years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

            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. 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 Fairchild as #237 in its seeking information photos, and the Orlando Resident Agency of the FBI’s Tampa Field Office. Valuable assistance was provided by the U.S. Capitol Police and the Metropolitan Police Department.

            In the 16 months since Jan. 6, 2021, more than 800 individuals have been arrested in nearly all 50 states for crimes related to the breach of the U.S. Capitol, including over 250 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.

Updated May 11, 2022