A Florida newspaper identified the man in the viral photo grinning and posing with a lectern taken from Speaker Nancy Pelosi‘s office during the Capitol riots, and he is now under arrest and being held at the Pinellas County jail on a Federal warrant.
Adam Christian Johnson, 36, is a a stay-at-home dad of five who lives in Parrish, Florida, near Tampa, according to the Bradenton Herald. The newspaper identified him this week with assistance from local residents and an acquaintance who saw his photo on social media.
The paper also reports that his own social media posts, since taken down, talked of being in the Capitol ahead of the riots, and disparaged Black Lives Matter and other groups, including the police.
Before being deleted or taken down, Johnson’s social media accounts included posts that he was Washington, D.C., ahead of the riots. In one, he disparaged the Black Lives Matter movement and law enforcement officers who defend First Amendment protected rights.
The FBI had been searching for Johnson in connection with the ransacking of the Capitol, and were able to locate and arrest him Friday night after tips from the local area.
On Friday, FBI special agents following up on some tips from Manatee County as part of their “all-hands-on-deck” effort across the country to investigate those responsible for the riot.
Allan Mestel, a photographer in Bradenton, was among those contacted by FBI agents in response to a tip. Mestel knows Johnson through a mutual association, he explained.
“I do know some details about his relationship and the problems they have had with his extreme right views, which has now come to a head,” Mestel said. “Once I saw the picture of him with Nancy Pelosi’s podium, I knew it was him.”
Johnson will face charges related to the attack on the Capitol along with over a dozen other suspects already identified by the Justice Department. Charges filed on those cases can result in sentences of up to 10 years in Federal prison.
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