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Press Release

Kentucky Man Pleads Guilty to Felony Conspiracy Charge for Actions During Jan. 6 Capitol Breach

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

           WASHINGTON – A Kentucky man pleaded guilty today to a felony conspiracy charge stemming from his conduct 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.

           Dan Edwin Wilson, 48, of Louisville, Kentucky, pleaded guilty in the District of Columbia to conspiracy to impede or injure a federal officer, a felony offense. In addition to this felony offense, Wilson pleaded guilty to possession of a firearm by a prohibited person and possession of an unregistered firearm, charges originally brought in the Western District of Kentucky, which have since been transferred to the District of Columbia for plea and sentencing. 

           U.S. District Judge Dabney L. Friedrich will sentence Wilson on Aug. 22, 2024.

           According to court documents, Wilson began planning in the winter of 2020 to obstruct and interfere with the joint session of Congress at the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, to certify the Electoral College vote. On Dec. 22, 2020, Wilson—who in an encrypted messaging application – went by the moniker "Live Wire"—responded to a discussion regarding traveling to Washington, D.C. for Jan. 6, 2021, by writing, "Ooh Rah. Curb stomp crew all in!!!" 

           Later that same day, Wilson wrote, "We are willing to work and coordinate with others, but I am a gray ghost ranger," referring to Wilson's affiliation with a particular militia.  Wilson also discussed bringing firearms to Washington, D.C. for Jan. 6, 2021, but he ultimately wrote, on Dec. 24, 2020, "In my opinion I don't think it's time to gun up for the sixth we have to play this out but if they seat biden on the 20th all bets are off it's gonna happen even if Trump wins we have to get this government under control it's been crossing my mind if we go to a Civil War do we try to take Washington DC first or do we try to take state capitals first."  On Dec. 27, 2020, Wilson wrote, "I am ready to lay my life on the line. It is time for good men to do bad things."

           Wilson traveled to Washington, D.C., with co-defendant David Scott Kuntz for the events of Jan. 6, 2021, and with intent to corruptly obstruct or impede Congress. To accomplish their goals, the two men agreed with each other and others to work together and coordinate their actions. In the early morning hours of January 6th, Wilson and Kuntz gathered with others in the area of the Lincoln Memorial and later at the Ellipse to witness the former president's speech. 

           After the speech, Wilson made his way toward the Capitol where he passed fencing and barricades and joined with thousands of other rioters on the grounds of the U.S. Capitol. At approximately 1:43 p.m., via Zello, a live voice push-to-talk communication platform available on cell phones, Wilson shared an audio message to a group called, "Stop the Steal J6." In the message, Wilson stated, "The people are trying to push through the barricade at the Capitol building. We're headed that way."

           At approximately 1:44 p.m., over Zello, the defendant received a message from another individual. The individual asked, "How many patriots do we have pushing through at the Capitol, Live Wire?" Wilson responded a few seconds later, "Hey, pass the word, Badlands, as fast as you can, the people are pushing on the Capitol. We need hands on deck." The individual responded, seconds later, "Heard, Live Wire. Will send."

            Wilson used Zello again at approximately 1:45 p.m. and shared a message to a group called "Oath Keepers general chat." In that message, Wilson said, "Hey, whoever's got ears on, even if you ain't in D.C., pass the word, the people are pushing on the Capitol. We need all hands on deck."

           Wilson later ascended the Capitol to the Upper West Terrace and stood on a set of bleachers that overlooked the Inaugural stage and West Plaza. As he watched the crowd below, Wilson triumphantly raised his fist before turning back and walking up the bleacher toward the U.S. Capitol building. 

           Wilson entered the U.S. Capitol building at about 2:37 p.m. through the Upper West Terrace Door, wearing a gas mask. After entering the building, Wilson entered the Rotunda, where he remained for several minutes. From the Rotunda, the Wilson walked through Statuary Hall before returning to the Rotunda and ultimately exiting via the East Rotunda Doors at approximately 2:49 p.m. 

           The FBI arrested Wilson on May 25, 2023. 

           Kuntz was previously charged for his role in the events of January 6th on March 7, 2024. His case remains ongoing. 

           On June 3, 2022, authorities executed a search warrant at Wilson's home in Kentucky and recovered numerous firearms and ammunition. Wilson is prohibited from possessing a firearm or ammunition due to previous felony convictions. 

           The U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Columbia and the Department of Justice National Security Division's Counterterrorism Section are prosecuting this case. The U.S. Attorney's Office for the Western District of Kentucky originally provided the firearms offenses and has provided valuable additional assistance. 

           This case was investigated by the FBI's Louisville and Washington Field Offices. Valuable assistance was provided by the U.S. Capitol Police and the Metropolitan Police Department.

            In the 40 months since Jan. 6, 2021, more than 1,424 individuals have been charged in nearly all 50 states for crimes related to the breach of the U.S. Capitol, including more than 500 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 May 17, 2024

Violent Crime
Press Release Number: 24-435