The FBI arrested Michigan Republican gubernatorial candidate Ryan Kelley—one of five GOP candidates in the state—on misdemeanor charges related to the January 6 riot, according to a criminal complaint filed Thursday.
FBI agents raided Kelley’s home near Grand Rapids, Michigan, and arrested Kelley, a real estate broker who was visible in videos taken at the Capitol on the day of the January 6 insurrection.
The criminal complaint cites four charges, including disorderly and disruptive conduct in a restricted building or grounds; knowingly entering or remaining on restricted grounds without lawful authority; and knowingly engaging in any act of physical violence against person or property in any restricted building or grounds, some of the same charges that have been filed against a host of alleged participants in the January 6 riots.
The FBI did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Forbes, but FBI spokeswoman Mara Schneider confirmed the search and arrest to several outlets.
Kelly is expected to appear in federal court later on Thursday, the Detroit News reported.
Last June, the Michigan Democratic Party shared a video of Kelley in which he appeared to cheer on rioters on January 6, shouting “Come on, let’s go! This is it! This is–this is war, baby!” as protesters climbed the steps to the building.
Kelley has said he did not go inside the Capitol building, claiming in an interview with Michigan outlet MLive last year that he left “once things started getting crazy.”
A spokesperson for Kelley did not respond to a request for comment from Forbes.
Kelley has sparked controversy over a host of incidents in recent years as he has gained popularity among conservative groups, including for his presence at the Capitol on January 6 as well as his involvement in organizing a pro-gun rally at the Michigan Capitol to protest Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s Covid-19 lockdown orders. Last January, FBI agents received a tip containing the same video footage of Kelley at the insurrection shared by the Michigan Democratic Party, according to court documents. FBI agents—who analyzed photos and video footage from various sources, including media outlets—said Kelley, who was wearing sunglasses and a baseball cap, climbed onto an “architectural feature” next to the Capitol steps and encouraged a crowd of rioters to move up the stairs toward the building. Kelley pulled a covering off of a structure Capitol personnel had installed for a future event, and in another incident, supported another rioter who was pulling a metal barricade onto the scaffolding, according to the complaint. The arrest comes as the House committee tasked with investigating the January 6 insurrection is scheduled to release findings from its months-long probe of the riots during the first of several public hearings Thursday evening.
The arrest comes after five former Michigan GOP candidates—including one of the party’s top candidates, former Detroit Police Chief James Craig—were disqualified from the August primary last month for submitting petitions with thousands of forged signatures.
More than 850. That’s how many people have been charged in the Capitol riots so far, according to a tracker maintained by Insider. That number is expected to grow as federal agents continue to analyze piles of footage, photos and tips from the January 6 events.