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Press Release

St. Louis Man Pleads Guilty to Felony Charge for Actions During Jan. 6 Capitol Breach

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

           WASHINGTON – A St. Louis man pleaded guilty today to a felony offense related to 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.

           Rally Runner, F.K.A., Daniel Donnelly, Jr., 43, of St. Louis, Missouri, pleaded guilty in the District of Columbia to a felony offense of civil disorder. U.S. District Judge Jia M. Cobb will sentence Runner on July 30, 2024.

           According to court documents, Runner traveled to Washington, D.C., to attend the former President’s rally at the Ellipse on Jan. 6, 2021. After the rally, Runner proceeded to the U.S. Capitol building and, ultimately, the Lower West Terrace Tunnel, wearing a red “Keep America Great” hat, red jacket, and distinctive red face paint. The Tunnel was the site of some of the most violent attacks against law enforcement on January 6th. Rioters at the Tunnel battled police officers for hours as they attempted to storm the Capitol building. Here, police had retreated inside the Tunnel to protect an entrance to the Capitol building.

           Court documents say that Runner, standing just outside the Tunnel, first helped the crowd pass a ladder toward the Tunnel’s opening before moving closer to the front of the crowd of rioters. Runner then made his way to the threshold of the Tunnel’s entrance, facing off with police and holding a riot shield he had obtained earlier. Law enforcement officers attempted to move the crowd out of the Tunnel. Runner is seen holding up the stolen riot shield to the law enforcement officers, forming a wall in connection with other shields held by other rioters.

           The rioters then surged forward as a group, with Runner in the lead, using his shield to push officers backward. Runner used his shield for the next several minutes to continuously push against officers, gaining ground and eventfully forcing the officers into the Capitol building. After approximately 10 minutes, a second group of officers joined the push, and the rioters were forced out of the Tunnel. After being forced out of the Tunnel, Runner triumphantly celebrated his conduct.

           Later that day, on January 6th, Runner posted a video on his Facebook page in which he admitted to being at the U.S. Capitol. In the video, Runner states, in part, “I get a riot shield, and I’m not trying to cause any violence, but I’m trying to be the furthest person to get through all the way, or at least get the furthest” and “I took up a lot of space, and I had the rioter shield, and I was right up there, and for some reason, like, the other people up there on the front lines with me, they did something similar.... It’s like they followed my lead, kind of.”

           The FBI arrested Runner on Aug. 2, 2023, in St. Louis.  

           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 Eastern District of Missouri provided valuable assistance. 

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

           In the 38 months since Jan. 6, 2021, more than 1,358 individuals have been charged in nearly all 50 states for crimes related to the breach of the U.S. Capitol, including more than 486 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 March 22, 2024

Violent Crime
Press Release Number: 24-265