A Proud Boys member who allegedly pepper-sprayed police has been charged over his role in the Capitol riots

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Members of the far-right group Proud Boys make ‘OK’ hand gestures indicating ‘white power’ as supporters of U.S. President Donald Trump gather in front of the U.S. Capitol Building to protest against the certification of the 2020 U.S. presidential election results by the U.S. Congress, in Washington, US, January 6, 2021. Jim Urquhart/Reuters
  • Another member of the far-right group the Proud Boys has been arrested following the Capitol riots.
  • Charging documents say Christopher Worrell pepper-sprayed police officers during the insurrection.
  • Worrell’s lawyer said he plans to plead not guilty and was only in DC because of Trump.
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More than two months after the deadly Capitol insurrection, the arrests keep coming.

Last week, the Justice Department filed charges against Christopher Worrell, an alleged Proud Boy, over his role in the January 6 riots, according to court documents.

Worrell is accused of pepper-spraying Capitol police officers during the chaos of the siege, among additional charges, including engaging in violence and disorderly conduct on restricted grounds, knowingly entering restricted grounds, violent entry onto Capitol grounds, and obstructing Congressional proceedings.

-Ryan J. Reilly (@ryanjreilly) March 13, 2021

Prosecutors say the 49-year-old traveled from his home of Naples, Florida to Washington, DC, to participate in the pro-Trump rally on January 6. In photographic evidence from that day gathered by officials, Worrell can be seen wearing a tactical vest and radio earpiece and armed with pepper-spray.

Charging documents said a tipster acquainted with Worrell’s live-in girlfriend contacted FBI officials in mid-January to identify Worrell in pictures from the riot. The tipster reportedly said Worrell’s girlfriend told their mutual acquaintance that he was a member of the far-right nationalist group the Proud Boys.

An agent then interviewed Worrell about his participation in the insurrection and inquired about possible planned violence for the upcoming January 20 presidential inauguration. According to the criminal complaint, Worrell was “extremely agitated and upset that the FBI was at his house.”

Worrell eventually acknowledged he had been in DC on January 6, but denied entering the building and any other wrongdoing, legal records said. When asked about his participation in the Proud Boys, he once again became “agitated.”

Worrell reportedly told the agent that the “Proud Boys were not a racist white supremacist group like the media tries to portray.”

Charging documents include photos of Worrell from January 6 pictured with other alleged Proud Boys and making the “OK” symbol, a hand motion associated with white nationalism. While the legal documents do not include any photos of Worrell inside the Capitol, one does depict him pointing his pepper spray at an out-of-frame target where officials say “law enforcement are positioned.”

The alleged Proud Boy was arrested Friday, March 13, according to Naples Daily News. A Florida judge released Worrell after his first court appearance, but the Justice Department immediately appealed the decision, and the chief judge of the federal court in Washington, DC, halted his release pending further review, CNN reported.

Worrell’s lawyer, Landon Miller, told the news outlet that his client plans to plead not guilty and denies using pepper spray against police. Worrell via Miller also joined the growing number of Capitol riot arrestees to blame former President Donald Trump for his participation in the insurrection.

“Mr. Worrell is overcharged without supporting evidence,” Miller told CNN. “Mr. Worrell adamantly asserts that at no time did he pepper spray toward any law enforcement personnel nor intended to spray any law enforcement personnel. He also asserts that he went to Washington, DC, and then the Capitol grounds at the direction of former President Trump.”

More than 315 people have been charged in the Capitol insurrection so far.