Virginia Man Sentenced on Felony Charges For Actions During Jan. 6 Capitol Breach
Defendant Joined Mob in Destroying Media Equipment
WASHINGTON – A Virginia man was sentenced today for destroying media equipment and other illegal 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.
Joshua Dillon Haynes, 40, of Covington, Virginia, was sentenced to 32 months in prison. Haynes pleaded guilty on October 28, 2022, in the District of Columbia, to obstruction of an official proceeding and destruction of property. In addition to the prison term, U.S. District Court Judge Tanya S. Chutkan ordered restitution, to be determined at a future date, and 36 months of supervised release.
According to court documents, on Jan. 6, 2021, at about 2:30 p.m., Haynes was illegally on restricted grounds, part of a mob that gathered on the Lower West Terrace of the Capitol, outside the East Rotunda Doors. About 20 minutes later, he followed a mob of rioters and entered the Capitol Building through the Senate Wing Door. He remained there until approximately 3:12 p.m., walking in areas including the Crypt and inside the office of a U.S. Senator.
While outside the building, Haynes assisted two other individuals in forcibly removing an air conditioning unit from a building outside the Capitol and dropped the unit to the ground.
At about 4:50 p.m., a large crowd of rioters made its way to and past a media staging area that was set up outside the northeast corner of the Capitol, on the grounds. Media members were forced to flee the area before they could recover their cameras and associated equipment. Numerous members of the crowd destroyed equipment, including cameras, tripods, and remote broadcasting equipment. At about 5 p.m., Haynes picked up and slammed down multiple pieces of equipment that belonged to media outlets.
Later Jan. 6, after the equipment at the media staging area was destroyed, Haynes sent an associate a text message saying, “broke lotsa stuff.” He then sent an image with the message, “We attacked the CNN reporters and the fake news and destroyed tens of thousands of dollars of their video and television equipment.” He also sent this message to the same associate, “I want to get busted for tearing up the nations capital and the fake news.”
Haynes was arrested on July 1, 2021, in Covington, Virginia.
This case was 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 Western District of Virginia.
The case was investigated by the FBI’s Washington Field Office, which identified Haynes as #203 on its website seeking information photos. Valuable assistance was provided by the Metropolitan Police Department and the U.S. Capitol Police.
In the 24 months since Jan. 6, 2021, more than 950 individuals have been arrested in nearly all 50 states for crimes related to the breach of the U.S. Capitol, including over 284 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.