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Press Release

Maryland Man Pleads Guilty to Assaulting Law Enforcement During Jan. 6 Capitol Breach

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

            WASHINGTON – A Maryland man pleaded guilty on May 23, 2024, to a felony charge as a result of 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.

Nicholas Ortt, 43, of Mount Airy, Maryland, pleaded guilty to a felony charge of assaulting, resisting, or impeding certain officers before U.S. District Judge Loren L. AliKhan. Judge AliKhan will sentence Ortt on Sept. 23, 2024.

According to court documents, Ortt traveled to Washington, D.C., on Jan. 6, 2021, to attend the “Stop the Steal” rally and protest the results of the 2020 presidential election. After the rally, Ortt walked with a crowd toward the United States Capitol and, from there, onto the Capitol grounds. Once on Capitol grounds, Ortt entered the restricted area and eventually made his way to the West Plaza of the Capitol.

After entering the restricted area on the Capitol’s west side, Ortt made his way through a mob of rioters until he reached the police line on the West Plaza. At approximately 2:28 p.m., Ortt and other rioters on the north side of the West Plaza breached a police line and forcibly pushed past and assaulted the vastly outnumbered officers. Court documents say that as Ortt attempted to bypass the police line, he forcibly assaulted and struggled with several officers who were attempting to maintain the line.

As Ortt moved through the police line, he fought with multiple officers and grabbed their batons as the officers struggled to avert attacks by other rioters. Court documents say that once he successfully breached the police line, Ortt continued to forcibly assault, oppose, impede, and interfere with the officers, preventing those officers from reinforcing the collapsing line.

After continued confrontations between Ortt and law enforcement, officers successfully repelled Ortt’s advance, and he retreated into the mob. However, seconds after Ortt broke through, the police line collapsed, and the mob of rioters, including Ortt, flooded onto the Lower West Terrace.

Later that day, Ortt used his Facebook account to post about his participation in the riot at the Capitol. At approximately 4:07 p.m., Ortt posted on Facebook a photograph depicting himself outside the Capitol as he celebrates with another rioter, who is in turn brandishing a stolen USCP riot shield. Ortt later wrote of his conduct on January 6th at the Capitol on social media. In one post, Ortt wrote, “Never was prouder to be part of it” and, “Trust me I was there at the front lines.”

The FBI arrested Ortt on March 8, 2024, in Ellicott City, Maryland.  

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 District of Maryland provided valuable assistance.

The FBI's Baltimore and Washington Field Offices investigated this case and listed Ortt as BOLO (Be on the Lookout) #351 in its seeking information images. The U.S. Capitol Police and the Metropolitan Police Department provided valuable assistance.

 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 24, 2024

Violent Crime
Press Release Number: 24-454