An Arkansas man has been arrested on felony and misdemeanor charges for his actions during the breach of the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021. Nathan Earl Hughes, 34, of Fayetteville, Arkansas, is accused of participating in the Lower West Terrace Tunnel Riot, where he engaged in disruptive and disorderly conduct, impeded passage through the Capitol grounds, and physically fought against the police line in an attempt to breach the U.S. Capitol building. Hughes was observed on video footage wearing distinctive clothing and actively encouraging others to join the mayhem. This arrest serves as another step towards justice for the events that unfolded on that fateful day.
Arkansas Man Arrested on Felony and Misdemeanor Charges for Actions During Jan. 6 Capitol Breach
An Arkansas man, Nathan Earl Hughes, was recently arrested on felony and misdemeanor charges for his involvement in the breach of the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021. This event disrupted a joint session of the U.S. Congress that was taking place to certify the electoral votes for the 2020 presidential election. Hughes is accused of participating in the riot that occurred in the Lower West Terrace Tunnel. The charges filed against him include a felony offense of civil disorder, as well as misdemeanor offenses of entering and remaining in a restricted building or grounds, disorderly and disruptive conduct in a restricted building or grounds, and impeding passage through the Capitol grounds or buildings.
Arrest and Initial Appearance
Hughes was arrested on August 30, 2023, in Fayetteville, Arkansas. He subsequently made an initial appearance in the Western District of Arkansas. This arrest and appearance mark the beginning of the legal process that Hughes will go through in relation to his alleged actions during the Capitol breach.
Law enforcement officials were able to obtain video footage of the events that took place at the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021. This footage includes images of Nathan Earl Hughes in the Lower West Terrace Tunnel for at least one hour. Hughes can be seen wearing distinctive attire and accessories, including a black/dark blue and camouflage print hat, black Mechanix gloves, a gray hooded sweatshirt, and a black “Infowars” branded shirt with an image of a space shuttle and the words “Space Force Est. 2020” written on it.
Involvement in the Riot
According to court documents, the video footage shows Hughes engaging in various actions during the riot in the Lower West Terrace Tunnel. He is seen pushing against the police line in the tunnel and physically fighting with police officers in an attempt to breach the line and gain entry to the U.S. Capitol building. At one point, Hughes can be seen signaling and encouraging other rioters to enter the tunnel, waving his hand in the direction of the tunnel. He then charged towards the police line alongside the crowd.
Once inside the tunnel, Hughes continued to signal others to join him and confront the police line. He stood shoulder-to-shoulder with other rioters and engaged in a synchronized rocking movement with the crowd. Additionally, Hughes was observed assisting the mob in forcibly removing police riot shields from the tunnel and distributing them to other rioters. He personally attempted to forcefully pull away police shields and hand them out to the crowd.
Later on, around 3:19 p.m., when police were forcing Hughes out of the tunnel, he was seen using his elbow to strike in the direction of the police. Despite being pushed out of the tunnel, Hughes remained in the vicinity for at least 90 minutes, encouraging other rioters to pull out police officers. Earlier in the day, he had witnessed other members of the mob forcibly removing police officers from the tunnel and into the crowd.
Prosecution and Investigation
The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia and the Department of Justice National Security Division’s Counterterrorism Section are responsible for prosecuting the case against Nathan Earl Hughes. The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Arkansas has provided valuable assistance in this matter. The investigation into Hughes’s actions during the Capitol breach is being carried out by the FBI’s Little Rock and Washington Field Offices, with support from the U.S. Capitol Police and the Metropolitan Police Department.
Total Arrests and Charges
Since January 6, 2021, over 1,106 individuals have been arrested in nearly all 50 states for crimes related to the breach of the U.S. Capitol. A significant number of these individuals, more than 350, have been charged specifically with assaulting or impeding law enforcement.
How to Report Tips
If you have any information or tips related to the January 6 Capitol breach or any other related crimes, you can contact the FBI by calling 1-800-CALL-FBI (800-225-5324) or by visiting tips.fbi.gov. Your cooperation and assistance can help in the ongoing investigation of these crimes.
It is important to note that while Nathan Earl Hughes has been charged with these offenses, he is presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law. A complaint is merely an allegation and does not serve as proof of guilt. The legal process will determine Hughes’s culpability or innocence based on the evidence presented in court.
In conclusion, the arrest of Nathan Earl Hughes serves as another step in the ongoing efforts to hold individuals accountable for their actions during the January 6 Capitol breach. Law enforcement agencies and the justice system are working together to identify, investigate, and prosecute those responsible for the breach and the disruption of our democratic processes. The public’s cooperation and vigilance are crucial in ensuring justice is served and the rule of law is upheld.