A Georgia man was sentenced Wednesday for assaulting a law enforcement officer and obstruction of an official proceeding related to his actions 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.
Bruno Joseph Cua, 21, of Milton, Georgia, was sentenced Wednesday by U.S. District Judge Randolph D. Moss to 12 months and one day in prison and 36 months of supervised release.
Cua was found guilty of two felony charges, obstruction of an official proceeding and assaulting, resisting, interfering with, intimidating, opposing, or impeding officers, following a stipulated trial before Judge Moss in February 2023.
According to the stipulated facts, the defendant and his parents drove from Milton, Georgia, to Washington, D.C., on Jan. 5, 2021. On Jan. 6, 2021, they attended the rally at the Washington Monument, after which they walked toward the U.S. Capitol building. After arriving on the grounds of the Capitol, Cua separated from his parents, and with an asp baton in his hands, climbed the scaffolding on the west side of the building.
Cua then entered the Capitol through the Upper West Terrace doors at approximately 2:36 p.m., past a line of United States Capitol Police (USCP) officers who were guarding the door as an alarm was blaring. Cua walked through the Rotunda, and then up the stairs to the third floor.
While on the third floor, he walked down a hallway, tried to open multiple doors, and yelled, “This is what happens when you piss off patriots!”, “Hey! Where are the swamp rats hiding?!”, and “Where are the swamp rats hiding at?”
At approximately 2:41 p.m., Cua reached the doors to the Senate Gallery. At that time, on-duty USCP officers were attempting to lock the doors to the gallery to prevent the Senate Gallery and Senate Floor from being breached by the mob. Cua then assaulted one of the USCP officers by violently shoving him. As a result of Cua’s and the actions of others, the officers retreated from the doors without locking them.
At approximately 2:45 p.m., Cua rushed into the Senate Gallery and yelled in celebration, “This is our house! This is our country!” After several minutes in the Senate Gallery, he jumped from the Senate Gallery down to the Senate Floor, where he walked directly to the dais at the center of the Senate Chamber, where the President of the Senate, the Vice President of the United States, presides over the Senate. Cua then sat in the Vice President’s chair, reclined, and put his feet up on the desk. Cua spent several minutes on the Senate Floor, during which time he accessed several desks belonging to U.S. Senators and helped other rioters enter the Senate Chamber.
Law enforcement escorted him out of the Capitol at 2:53 p.m.
Before the attack on the Capitol, Cua made multiple statements on social media about his plans to violently interrupt the certification proceedings. After January 6, the defendant made several more statements on social media confirming his participation in the riot, the use of violence during the riot, and his belief that additional violence may be necessary in the future.
This case was prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia. Valuable assistance was provided by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia.
This case was investigated by the FBI’s Atlanta Field Office. Valuable assistance was provided by the FBI’s Washington Field Office and the U.S. Capitol Police.
In the 30 months since Jan. 6, 2021, more than 1,069 individuals have been arrested in nearly all 50 states for crimes related to the breach of the U.S. Capitol, including more than 350 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.