Man who smoked pot in Capitol on January 6 pleads guilty to disorderly conduct

08 October 2021 - 10:30 By Mark Hosenball
Christopher Warnagiris, 40, is believed to be the first active duty US military officer to be charged in connection with the riot, a law enforcement official said.
Christopher Warnagiris, 40, is believed to be the first active duty US military officer to be charged in connection with the riot, a law enforcement official said.
Image: REUTERS/Al Drago

A man from Glens Falls, New York, who prosecutors said smoked marijuana inside of the Capitol during the January 6 riot, pleaded guilty on Thursday to entering and remaining in a restricted building.

US federal prosecutor Alexis Loeb told Judge Emmet Sullivan at a hearing in Washington that when James Bonet, 29, entered the Capitol, he declared: "We're taking it back. We're taking it back."

He then smoked a marijuana cigarette after entering the office of Oregon Democratic U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley, Loeb said.

Bonet could face a prison term of up to six months and a fine of between $500 and $9,500, although the judge said probation might be "an appropriate deterrent."

In a separate case stemming from the events of January 6 - which saw hundreds of supporters of Republican then-President Donald Trump storm the seat of Congress - a US Marine officer accused of taking part in the riot was given access to a security video that his lawyer had argued he should be able to review.

Christopher Warnagiris, 40, is believed to be the first active duty US military officer to be charged in connection with the riot, a law enforcement official said.

Warnagiris and his defense lawyer were ordered to treat the video as "highly sensitive" by Judge Paul Friedman.

Warnagiris, a US Marine major from Woodbridge, Virginia, is facing nine riot-related criminal counts. Prosecutors allege Warnagiris entered the Capitol by pushing through a line of police guarding the building and that he positioned himself in a doorway and pulled others inside.

Warnagiris is pleading not guilty to the charges. A further hearing was set for January 7.

About 40 US military veterans have been charged over their part in the day's events, as well as four military reservists, according to the official.

The Justice Department also announced that on Wednesday, Philadelphia resident Michael Dickinson, 30, was arrested on multiple riot-related charges. Court documents said videos showed Dickinson throwing a large bucket filled with liquid at police trying to clear rioters from Capitol grounds.

Reuters


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