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Press Release

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

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Columbia
Defendant Attacked Police with Bear Spray and Whip-like Weapon

           WASHINGTON — A Texas man pleaded guilty today to assaulting law enforcement 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.

           Andrew Quentin Taake, 32, of Houston, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Carl J. Nichols to one count of assaulting, resisting, or impeding certain officers using a dangerous weapon, a felony. Judge Nichols will sentence Taake on March 26, 2024.

           According to court documents, Taake traveled from Houston to Washington, D.C., to protest Congress’ certification of the Electoral College vote on January 6, 2021. At about 1:16 p.m. on January 6, Taake entered the restricted grounds of the Capitol and sprayed a line of law enforcement officers from the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) with bear spray. These officers were attempting to prevent rioters from further professing toward the Capitol building.

           At about 2:00 p.m., additional MPD officers attempted to make their way through the crowd of rioters to reinforce those law enforcement officers preventing rioters from entering the Capitol. Court documents say that some rioters then clustered around these approaching officers to prevent them from moving forward. Taake then emerged from the crowd of rioters and attacked an MPD officer while holding a whip-like weapon.

           Taake entered the Capitol building via the Senate Wing door at approximately 2:20 p.m. and made his way to the Crypt and hallways near the Crypt, brandishing the whip-like weapon. Later that day, Taake messaged an individual on a dating application and spoke on his conduct at the Capitol. When asked whether he was “near all the action,” Taake responded, “Yes, from the very beginning. I was pepper sprayed, tear gassed, had flash bangs thrown at me, and hit with batons for peacefully standing there.” Taake then sent a photo of himself, which he described as “[a]bout 20 minutes after being pepper sprayed. Safe to say I was the very first person to be sprayed that day…all while just standing there.” 

           Taake was arrested on July 23, 2021, in Texas by the FBI.

           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 Southern District of Texas.

          This case is being investigated by the FBI's Houston Field Office. Valuable assistance was provided by the FBI’s Washington Field Office, the Metropolitan Police Department, and the U.S. Capitol Police.

           In the 35 months since Jan. 6, 2021, more than 1,230 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 is ongoing.

           Anyone with tips can call 1-800-CALL-FBI (800-225-5324) or visit

Updated December 21, 2023

Violent Crime
Press Release Number: 23-776