The list of people from Wisconsin charged in the January 6 attacks on the US Capital have grown by two in recent months. Now a total of eight men are facing charges for their roles in the riot.
In just the last few months, two new people have been arrested by the FBI and are facing charges. One of the most recent cases involves a man who admitted to beating police officers during the attack.
The retired head of the Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) in Milwaukee, Joel Lee, says this case is important to the country and needs a thorough investigation.
"Peaceful protest is encouraged and is the American way, but from the other end of the spectrum, seditious activity cannot be tolerated,” said Lee.
Court records show federal agents arrested Riley Kasper, who says he is a farmer from Green Bay, on March 17, 2022. Kasper admitted in text messages that he attacked police officers during the January 6 riots on the Capital. He is facing some of the most serious charges including assaulting officers using a deadly weapon, entering a restricted building with a deadly or dangerous weapon, act of physical violence in the Capitol, among others.
Court records show he sent multiple text messages bragging that he hurt police officers. In one text he said "pepper sprayed 3 cops" and in another message wrote: "We're beating cops with fence panels and fulling [sic] their helmets and radios off of them and yanking them from their line into the crowd and just shoving him around between people so much he can't [expletive] stand up."
Another arrest happened in May of 2022. Conlin Weyer from Plover is charged with entering a restrictive building, disorderly conduct in a restricted building, disorderly conduct in the Capitol and parading, demonstrating, or picketing in the Capitol. Court records show pictures of Weyer walking around the Capitol with his cell phone raised as if he is recording. Not much information has been released about what Weyer was doing in the Capitol other than he "Engaged in disorderly and disruptive conduct… and disrupt Government business."
Despite these two arrests coming more than a year after the attacks, Lee says that isn't long when you consider the thousands of hours of video and cell phone evidence federal investigators are digging through.
“I certainly don't think a year and half is too long,” said Lee. "When you add the scope of the case, I would say it is not a long time. I think it is the right time, because the one thing the investigation must be, is it must be thorough and it must be accurate.”
The only other person from Wisconsin who has not pleaded guilty to charges connected to attacking the Capitol is Michael Fitzgerald from Janesville.
He has pleaded not guilty and is awaiting trial for charges that include civil disorder, obstruction of an official proceeding and disorderly conduct on the Capitol grounds. According to court documents, “Fitzgerald was near the front of the line of rioters, participating in the push against law enforcement officers.”
Five other men from Wisconsin have all admitted to their roles in the Capitol attacks.
Joshua Munn from Melrose, Wisconsin entered a guilty plea but is awaiting his sentencing. Court records say he traveled with his family to the capitol. Records say he posted on social media, “Before you hear it on the news I am I [sic] family marched on DC today.”
Kevin Loftus from Eau Claire pleaded guilty to parading, demonstrating or picketing in a Capitol building. According to records, “Loftus admitted to walking on what he thought was the top floor of the U.S. Capitol.” He was sentenced to three years probation.
Abram Markofski from La Crosse pleaded guilty to the charge of parading, demonstrating or picketing in a Capitol building. He texted his a friend during the attacks saying: "We stormed the Capitol and shut it down. Currently inside still." He was given two years probation.
Markofski traveled to D.C. with his friend Brandon Nelson from Middleton. He also pleaded guilty to the same charge of parading, demonstrating or picketing in a Capitol building. Nelson sent video and texts to his mom during the attacks, saying “There is (expletive) everywhere,” according to court records. He got two years of probation.
The only person to serve any time for their charges so far is David Mish Junior from West Allis. He pleaded guilty to parading, demonstrating or picketing in a Capitol building. Court records say he told investigators, “I was with a group of guys…. [E]verybody was yelling ‘breach the building.’” Mish was sentenced to 30 days in jail.
Lee says given how large of an investigation is underway, he would not be surprised to see more people from Wisconsin charged. He expects the investigation will go on until the statue of limitations runs out.