Federal prosecutors in Washington, DC, on Tuesday acquired the first indictments against individuals who played a role in the Wednesday insurrection that saw hundreds of pro-Trump rioters breach security barriers and ransack the US Capitol.
Documents obtained by Josh Gerstein, the senior legal affairs contributor to Politico, name two individuals: Mark Jefferson Leffingwell and Lonnie Leroy Coffman.
Leffingwell was hit with six charges: civil disorder; entering and remaining in a restricted building; disorderly and disruptive conduct in a restricted building; violent entry and disorderly conduct in a Capitol building; act of physical violence in the Capitol building; and assaulting, resisting or impeding certain officers or employees.
The indictment notes that Leffingwell “did unlawfully, knowingly, and intentionally forcibly assault, resist, oppose, impede, intimidate, or interfere” with Capitol Police Officers Daniel Amendola and Wyatt Hart as they attempted to quell the insurrection.
An affidavit signed by Amendola states that after Leffingwell stormed the federal building with fellow rioters on January 6 and was prevented from moving closer to the Senate chamber, Leffingwell began to repeatedly punch the officer with a closed fist.
“I was struck in the helmet that I was wearing and in the chest,” Amendola recalled, before noting that Leffingwell continued to resist arrest while being detained.
As for Coffman, a total of 17 criminal counts were signed by acting US Attorney for the District of Columbia Michael Sherwin, and include possession of an unregistered firearm, carrying a pistol without a license and unlawful possession of ammunition, among others. However, he was not charged with any crime that related to participation in the Capitol riots.
The indictment documents state that Coffman had in his possession multiple firearms, such as a shotgun, rifle and handguns, and a variety of ammunition which included .223-caliber rounds, 45-millimeter rounds and 9-millimeter rounds.
Mason jars, cloth rags, igniter liquid and lighters - all components needed to create an explosive Molotov cocktail - were also in Coffman’s possession. In total, his vehicle contained 11 explosive devices, authorities said.
An affidavit provided by Capitol Police Special Agent Lawrence Anyaso explains that officers apprehended Coffman sometime after 6:30 p.m. local time on January 6 after discovering several firearms and destructive devices inside a vehicle registered to the Alabama resident. Investigators were led to Coffman’s vehicle amid reports of an explosive device near the Capitol building.
The latest development came as prosecutors have brought at least 55 criminal cases in connection with the Capitol unrest that sought and inevitably failed to halt the certification of the US Electoral College vote.
Additionally, earlier Tuesday, federal authorities filed a criminal complaint - not an indictment - against Mostofsky and charged him with theft of government property, illegal entry into a restricted area and disorderly conduct. The difference between a criminal complaint and an indictment is that a complaint is presented to a grand jury that will later determine whether to indict someone on its charges.