In another sign that the federal government's investigation of the riots at the U.S. Capitol is still advancing, a second person from Crawford County has been charged with crimes related to the storming of the building on Jan. 6, 2021.
The defendant, Mikhail E. Slye, 32, of Meadville, is accused of using a bike rack to intentionally trip a U.S. Capitol Police officer during the breach of the Capitol, according to a criminal complaint unsealed in U.S. District Court in Erie on Friday.
The complaint was filed in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, where Slye will be prosecuted. He had his initial appearance on Friday, by videoconference, in U.S. District Court in Erie because he was arrested in Meadville.
Crawford County is one of seven northwestern Pennsylvania counties in the jurisdiction of federal court in Erie, which is part of the Pittsburgh-based Western District of Pennsylvania.
In Erie, U.S. Magistrate Judge Richard A. Lanzillo presided over Slye's initial appearance and released him on an unsecured bond of $10,000.
Slye is charged with assaulting, resisting or impeding law enforcement officers, and interfering with a law enforcement officer during a civil disorder, both felonies. He also is charged with six misdemeanor offenses.
The FBI in Erie, Pittsburgh and Washington, D.C., investigated the case with help from the U.S. Capitol Police and the Metropolitan Police Department in Washington, D.C., the Department of Justice said.
Meadville riot suspect caught on video, feds say
The authorities used surveillance video and videos posted on the internet to help identify Slye, according to the criminal complaint. Help also came from a website called seditionhunters.org, which posts videos and photographs of the riots to to provide information on suspects.
On Jan. 18, 2021, seditionhunters.org posted a collection of screen captures taken from online videos of the Capitol riots to various social media platforms, according to the criminal complaint in Slye's case. Seditionhunter.org dubbed an unknown subject "JackTheTripper" - and that person was ultimately identified as Slye, according to the complaint.
Slye is charged with tripping the officer as the officer and his team were trying to rescue another officer caught in the crowd in the Upper West Terrace area of the Capitol, the Department of Justice said in announcing Slye's arrest. The officer fell down the stairs after he was tripped and was injured, the department said.
Slye is also accused of illegally entering the Capitol twice on Jan. 6, 2021 - once, at 2:56 p.m., remaining for three minutes, and again at 3:05 p.m., exiting at 3:35 p.m., the Department of Justice said. Slye is accused of moving throughout the Crypt area and other locations while inside the Capitol.
Meadville suspect joins long list of Pa. residents charged in Jan. 6 cases
The other Crawford County resident accused in the riots is Jeremy Vorous, of Venango, in northern Crawford County. He was charged in March 2021 with knowingly entering or remaining in any restricted building or grounds without lawful authority, violent entry and disorderly conduct on Capitol grounds and obstruction of any official proceeding.
Vorous, who was 43 when he was charged, is awaiting prosecution in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. A status conference in his case is scheduled for Oct. 27.
Vorous and now Slye are on a long list of Pennsylvania residents who are facing federal prosecution for the storming of the national seat of government in support of President Donald Trump on Jan. 6. 2021.
First Crawford County case:Crawford County man charged in Jan. 6 Capitol riots; initial hearings in Erie federal court
With Slye's arrest, more than 70 Pennsylvania residents have been charged in the riots. Florida leads the states with arrests, followed by Texas and then Pennsylvania.
Court proceedings:Crawford County defendant in Capitol riots says rights violated; federal judge disagrees
In the 20 months since Jan. 6, 2021, more than 870 people have been arrested in nearly all 50 states for crimes related to the breach of the U.S. Capitol, the Department of Justice said in Friday's announcement. It said that number includes more than 265 individuals charged with assaulting or impeding law enforcement.
"The investigation remains ongoing," the department said.
This article originally appeared on Erie Times-News: Jan. 6 riots: 2nd Crawford County resident charged in Capitol attack