Ohio pastor arrested on federal charges for role in January 2021 riot at US Capitol
CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - Court documents show that a pastor from a church in Ohio was arrested on Wednesday for his role in the violent Jan. 6, 2021 breach at the U.S. Capitol.
The criminal complaint filed with the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia indicates that William Dunfee is charged with:
- Civil disorder
- Obstruction of an official proceeding
- Entering and remaining in a restricted building or grounds
- Disorderly and disruptive conduct in a restricted building or grounds
- Engaging in physical violence in a restricted building or grounds
- Disorderly conduct in a Capitol building
- Act of physical violence in the Capitol grounds or buildings
According to the federal documents, the FBI began investigating Dunfee in February 2021 after a tipster provided screenshots of comments from a Facebook group claiming that the Warsaw, Ohio pastor at New Beginnings Ministries was “leading the way” into the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021.
“Pastor Bill and several others of our group made into the interior doors of the Capital. They pushed back and forth with the police. They talked to the officers and told them why they were there. Not to harm or destroy. They wanted to talk to the Congress. When an officer came back and said that wasn’t possible, they tried to force the doors open. They were pepper sprayed and were stopped.”
The FBI used security camera footage from the Capitol building and other video sources collected from that day to identify Dunfee.
Additional individuals provided federal investigators with photographs that appear to show Dunfee in restricted areas on the Capitol grounds.
“Specifically, three images were provided showing DUNFEE physically resisting U.S. Capitol Police by pushing against a metal barricade and entering the restricted areas of the U.S. Capitol grounds.”
According to the complaint, Dunfee was also allegedly seen in multiple videos speaking to crowds through a bullhorn. At one point, he stated:
“Mister police officers, we want you to understand something. We want you to understand something. We want Donald Trump, and if Donald Trump is not coming, we are taking our house. We are taking our house.”
Federal court hearing dates for Dunfee have not yet been scheduled.
This is a developing story.
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