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Press Release

Texas Man Pleads Guilty to Felony Charge for Offenses Committed During Jan. 6 Capitol Breach

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Columbia
Defendant Made Physical Contact With Law Enforcement Officers

            WASHINGTON – A Texas man pleaded guilty yesterday to a felony charge related to the breach of the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, which disrupted a joint session of the U.S. Congress that was in the process of ascertaining and counting the electoral votes related to the presidential election.

            Nolan B. Cooke, 23, of Sherman, Texas, pleaded guilty in the District of Columbia to a charge of civil disorder. According to court documents, Cooke joined the front lines of the riot on Jan. 6 and helped lead the charge breaking through the police line. He wore a camera around his neck and recorded videos during the day. While on the restricted grounds, Cooke was part of a crowd of individuals shoving their way through a group of U.S. Capitol Police officers, who were providing security to the Capitol on the east side of the building. While in the crowd, he yelled statements such as, “There’s a storm coming,” “We’re coming through,” and “Nothing’s holding us back.”

            Cooke ultimately climbed the steps to the Capitol and encountered more officers guarding the entrance. He made physical contact with one or more of these officers as he tried to push through the crowd. When he reached the door of the Capitol building, he banged on a window with a flagpole displaying the American flag. He encouraged others to “Break the glass.” Although the government has no evidence that Cooke entered the building, he committed or attempted to commit an act to obstruct, impede or interfere with one or more law enforcement officers carrying out their duties.

            Cooke was arrested on Jan. 21, 2021, in Sherman, Texas. He is to be sentenced on June 10, 2022. He faces up to five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

            The 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 Texas.

            The case is being investigated by the FBI’s Dallas and Washington Field Offices. Valuable assistance was provided by the U.S. Capitol Police.

            In the 14 months since Jan. 6, more than 775 individuals have been arrested in nearly all 50 states for crimes related to the breach of the U.S. Capitol, including over 245 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

Updated March 10, 2022

Violent Crime
Press Release Number: 22-62