US Capitol police officer charged for helping rioter hide Jan 6 evidence

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A US Capitol Police officer has been charged with obstruction of justice after he told a Facebook contact to remove a post from the rebellion on January 6.

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The indictment states that Michael Riley asked a person to remove any social media posts that showed they were present during the riots at the Capitol.

Prosecutors say Mr Riley, who was arrested on Friday, sent a private message to a man who posted selfies and videos from January 6 about being in the Capitol. Mr Riley was in the same Facebook groups that focused on fishing.


“[I’m] A Capitol police officer who agrees with your political stance,” Mr Riley reportedly wrote. “Part about being in the building they are currently investigating and whoever was in the building is going [be] accused. Just watching!”

“[I’m] Glad you got out there spotless, we hurt over 50 officers, some were very bad,” Mr Riley said.

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More than 100 officers were injured on 6 January.

Mr Riler also told the man to “get off social media” in mid-January.

“They are arresting dozens of people in a day. Everyone who was in the building engaged in violent acts, or destruction of property… and they are all being federally charged with felony,” he reportedly wrote.

Mr Riley also spoke to the man on the phone, telling others he had reportedly been in contact with the “Capital Police” and should expect trespassing charges.

Mr Riley has been placed on administrative leave, according to US Capitol Police Chief Tom Manger.

“Obstruction of justice is a very serious allegation. The department was informed about this investigation several weeks ago. Upon his arrest, the officer was placed on administrative leave till the completion of the case. The USCP’s Office of Professional Responsibility will then open an administrative investigation,” Mr Manger said in a statement, CNN reported.

The indictment states that Mr. Riley worked for the department for 25 years.

He was working in the K-9 unit on the day of the rebellion. Prosecutors, who say he was not working inside the Capitol building during the siege, said he responded when he received reports of an explosive device on Capitol Hill.

Mr Riley’s indictment did not identify the person he spoke to, but allegations state that the man was arrested on January 19 and the FBI asked the man about speaking to Mr Riley .

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