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'Strong evidence' shows rioters intended to 'capture and assassinate elected officials,' prosecutors say

Photo courtesy of Win McNamee / Getty Images file

Prosecutors said Jacob Chansley's 'words and actions at the Capitol' indicated that the rioters intended to "capture and assassinate" lawmakers.

Posted: Jan 15, 2021 11:15 AM

NBC News- A court filing in the case of one of the accused Capitol rioters says “strong evidence” suggests that their intent was to capture and assassinate members of Congress.

The statement comes in a motion filed by federal prosecutors in Arizona, who are seeking to have Jacob Chansley detained pending trial. Chansley, also known as Jake Angeli, was seen wearing horns, a fur headdress and face paint during the riot.

The motion, filed in federal court in Phoenix, says Chansley should be detained because he wants to return to Washington for the inauguration.

“Strong evidence, including Chansley’s own words and actions at the Capitol, supports that the intent of the Capitol rioters was to capture and assassinate elected officials of the United States government,” the document says.

However, it does not specify what statements of Chansley indicate that intent, nor do the actual charges against him make any reference to that intent. Chansley is charged with interfering with police, interrupting the proceedings, entering the Capitol without authority, disorderly conduct, and entering restricted areas.

His detention hearing is set for 2:30 p.m. MT.

The document describes Chansley as an unemployed persistent drug user with mental problems.

“Chansley has spoken openly about his belief that he is an alien, a higher being, and he is here on Earth to ascent to another reality,” the document says. It quotes him saying in a YouTube video as saying, “I am able to perceive multiple different frequencies of light beyond my five senses and it allows me to see into these other higher dimensions.”

Chansley was among the people whose images became the public faces of the riot. Donning a fur hat with horns and American-flag inspired face paint, Angeli stormed the Capitol bare-chested and gloated in the aftermath.

"The fact that we had a bunch of our traitors in office hunker down, put on their gas masks and retreat into their underground bunker, I consider that a win," Chansley, 33, said last week.

Chansley is a QAnon-supporting YouTuber who also was among the pro-Trump protesters who gathered outside the Maricopa County Elections Department in Phoenix on Nov. 5, claiming that the election was stolen.

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