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Press Release

New York Man Arrested on Felony and Misdemeanor Charges for Actions During Jan. 6 Capitol Breach

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Columbia
Defendant Accused of Attempting to Take Officer’s Baton, and Pushing Metal Bike Rack Into Line of Officers

            WASHINGTON — A New York man was arrested today on felony and misdemeanor charges, including assaulting law enforcement officers, for 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 presidential election.

            John O’Kelly, 66, of East Williston, New York, is charged in a criminal complaint filed in the District of Columbia with felony charges of assaulting, resisting, or impeding law enforcement officers and interfering with law enforcement officers during a civil disorder, as well as related misdemeanor offenses. O’Kelly was arrested in East Williston. He later is expected to make his initial appearance in the Eastern District of New York.

            According to court documents, on the afternoon of Jan. 6, 2021, O’Kelly illegally made his way to the West front of the Capitol grounds where rioters were fighting with law enforcement officers attempting to maintain a police barrier. At approximately 2:28 pm, O’Kelly emerged from the crowd and grabbed at the baton of an officer, attempting to take the weapon from the officer. The officer fought back and was able to keep the baton in his possession. O’Kelly then took a step back and pushed a metal bike rack being used to secure the perimeter into the line of officers.

            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 New York.

            The case is being investigated by the FBI’s New York Field Office and its Long Island Resident Agency, and the FBI’s Washington Field Office, which identified O’Kelly as #294 on its seeking information photos. Valuable assistance was provided by the U.S. Capitol Police and the Metropolitan Police Department.

            In the 21 months since Jan. 6, 2021, more than 880 individuals have been arrested in nearly all 50 states for crimes related to the breach of the U.S. Capitol, including over 270 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

            A complaint is merely an allegation, and all defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.


Updated October 20, 2022

Violent Crime
Press Release Number: 22-361