District Man Sentenced to 12 Years in Prison for Second Degree Murder While Armed in 2020 Shooting on Martin Luther King Jr. Ave.
Defendant Joined Fight at Barriers, Walked Through Rotunda
WASHINGTON – An Ohio man was sentenced today on a felony charge 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 Douglas Wright, 56, of Canton, Ohio, was sentenced to 49 months in prison for obstruction of an official proceeding. Wright pleaded guilty in August of 2022 in the District of Columbia. In addition to the prison term, U.S. District Court Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly ordered 36 months of supervised release and $2,000 restitution.
According to court documents, Wright organized two charter buses which he owned to travel to Washington on Jan. 6, 2021. Approximately 100 people traveled on the buses, which were then parked at Union Station in Washington. Wright and the group then walked to the U.S. Capitol, where he entered the grounds. Wright and others pushed against a metal barricade against federal law enforcement officers in the first effort on the East Front to break through the security perimeter and advance towards the Capitol. He then took a break to catch his breath. About 15 minutes later, the crowd had pushed through the barriers, and Wright entered the Capitol Building. While inside, he walked through the Rotunda, took video, posted video to Facebook Live, and smoked a cigarette. He then left the building.
In addition to his physical conduct, Wright made numerous statements on social media, including, “YESTERDAY WAS A PRACTICE RUN,” “NO MORE PROTESTING,” “SET ON NICE BENCH IN ROTUNDA AND HAD A SMOKE,” and “I THINK WE NEED TO MAKE HOME VISITS.” Also, on January 7, 2021, Wright participated in an interview with a newspaper where he was quoted, “Yesterday wasn’t the end. Yesterday was the first battle of the war. I promise you.”
Wright was arrested May 3, 2021, in Canton.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia and the Justice Department’s National Security Division are prosecuting the case, with valuable assistance provided by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Ohio.
The case is being investigated by the FBI’s Cleveland Field Office and its Canton Resident Agency. Valuable assistance was provided by the FBI’s Washington Field Office, the Canton Police Department, the Stark County, Ohio, Sheriff’s Office, the Jackson Township, Ohio, Police Department, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Homeland Security Investigations, the U.S. Capitol Police, and the Metropolitan Police Department.
In the 26 months since Jan. 6, 2021, more than 999 individuals have been arrested in nearly all 50 states for crimes related to the breach of the U.S. Capitol, including more than 320 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.