Florida Man Indicted and Arrested on Felony and Misdemeanor Charges for Actions During Jan. 6 Capitol Breach
WASHINGTON — A Michigan man has been arrested on felony and misdemeanor charges related to his actions 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.
Jason Howland, 47, of Clinton Township, Michigan, is charged in a criminal complaint filed in the District of Columbia with a felony offense of obstruction of an official proceeding. In addition to the felony charge, Howland is charged with several misdemeanor offenses, including entering or remaining in a restricted building or grounds, disorderly and disruptive conduct in a restricted building or grounds, disorderly conduct in a Capitol building, and parading, demonstrating, or picketing in a Capitol building.
Howland was arrested yesterday by the FBI in in Mt. Clemens, Michigan, and will make his initial appearance in the Eastern District of Michigan.
According to court documents, Howland was identified in open-source video as present on the Capitol grounds near the scaffolding on the northwest side of the U.S. Capitol building on Jan. 6, 2021. Howland is depicted among a crowd of rioters amassed near a police line formed to prevent the mob from accessing the Upper West Terrace.
Court documents say that in an open-source video, Howland is seen turning his body to yell at the crowd behind him, "Let's go!" Afterward, Howland is seen waving his arm forward toward the police line. The crowd then immediately begins to push forward, overtaking the police line and assaulting the officers. Howland is then observed moving up the stairs in the direction of the Upper West Terrace at approximately 2:13 p.m.
Howland is then seen on the U.S. Capitol closed-circuit television (CCTV) footage entering the building via the Senate Wing Door at about 2:17 p.m. Howland then proceeded to the Crypt, carrying a sign with him. Inside the Crypt, Howland remained until approximately 2:26 p.m., using his cell phone and carrying a sign. Howland eventually left the Crypt and walked toward the House Wing Door before returning to the Crypt. He is seen walking between the Crypt and Crypt Lobby until eventually entering the Rotunda at about 2:51 p.m.
Court documents say that Howland then walked back and forth between the Rotunda and East Foyer, interacting with police officers attempting to clear rioters of the area. In one such interaction, a second rioter is seen physically restraining Howland during a confrontation with law enforcement. Howland remained in the East Foyer until approximately 3:17 p.m. when he exited the building via the Rotunda Doors. After leaving the building, Howland remained on Capitol grounds, yelling at law enforcement who were arriving in response to the riot.
This 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 Eastern District of Michigan.
This case is being investigated by the FBI's Detroit and Washington Field Offices. Valuable assistance was provided by the U.S. Capitol Police and the Metropolitan Police Department.
In the 36 months since Jan. 6, 2021, more than 1,265 individuals have been charged in nearly all 50 states for crimes related to the breach of the U.S. Capitol, including more than 440 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.
A complaint is merely an allegation, and all defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.