Jacob Anthony Chansley, a.k.a. Jake Angeli, 34, of Phoenix, Arizona, was sentenced today to 41 months in prison for his criminal conduct during the breach of the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, which disrupted a joint session of the U.S. Congress that was in the process of ascertaining and counting the electoral votes related to the presidential election. The defendant – wearing a Viking hat and carrying a six-foot spear – was among the first 30 rioters in the building.
According to court documents, Chansley was among the crowd that passed the police line at the West Front of the U.S. Capitol. He was shirtless, wearing a Viking hat with fur and horns, covered in red, white, and blue face paint, and carrying an American flag tied to a pole with a sharp object at the tip and a bullhorn. He and others in the crowd passed police lines and entered the scaffolding erected in advance of the Inauguration on top of the staircase heading up to the Lower West Terrace of the building. They then entered the Upper West Terrace at approximately 2:10 p.m., as the certification proceedings were still under way. Chansley continued into the building through a broken door at approximately 2:14 p.m. He kept moving, reaching the Gallery of the Senate and then the Senate floor. He then scaled the Senate dais, taking the seat that Vice President Mike Pence had occupied an hour earlier. Chansley proceeded to take pictures of himself on the dais and refused to vacate the seat when asked to do so by law enforcement. Instead, he stated that “Mike Pence is a f—-ing traitor” and wrote a note on available paper on the dais, stating “It’s Only A Matter of Time. Justice Is Coming!” He further called other rioters up to the dais and led them in an incantation over his bullhorn. He was cleared from the Chamber at approximately 3:09 p.m.
Chansley was arrested Jan. 9, 2021 and has been in custody ever since. He pleaded guilty in the District of Columbia on Sept. 3, 2021, to obstruction of an official proceeding. In addition to the prison term, Judge Royce C. Lamberth ordered him to pay $2,000 in restitution. He also must serve a period of three years of supervised release following completion of his prison term.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia and the Justice Department’s National Security Division prosecuted the case, with valuable assistance provided by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Arizona. The FBI’s Washington Field Office investigated the case, with valuable assistance from the U.S. Capitol Police, Metropolitan Police Department (MPD), and the FBI’s Phoenix Field Office.
In the ten months since Jan. 6, more than 675 individuals have been arrested in nearly all 50 states for crimes related to the breach of the U.S. Capitol, including over 210 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.