Biggs made a first federal court appearance on Wednesday, where he did not plead. U.S. Judge Embry Kidd from Orlando released him to house arrest after prosecutors failed to request his detention. He denied knowing about the pre-planning for the event during an interview with the FBI, court documents show.
According to the prosecution documents, Biggs was among the first to enter the Capitol during the riot at around 2:13 p.m., being part of a crowd that delayed electoral certification of President Biden’s electoral victory and forced the evacuation of Congress. Biggs was seen on video 20 seconds after someone who appears to be already charged, Proud Boys member Dominic Pezzola smashed a window on the Senate side of the building with a riot shield, according to an FBI affidavit .
“Hey Biggs, what do you have to say?” an offscreen voice said as Biggs reportedly entered, according to an FBI agent who cited a recorded video at the time of entry.
“It’s awesome!” the FBI alleged that Biggs responded before pulling up his gaiter to cover his face.
Biggs – facing charges of obstructing formal congressional proceedings, illegal entry and disorderly conduct on restricted Capitol grounds – is the latest Proud Boys member to be indicted in the assault on the Capitol. But the impeachment documents detailed the group’s level of activity.
Self-proclaimed organizer of the nationalist group and “Western chauvinist,” Biggs echoed the December 29 call made by Proud Boys President Enrique Tarrio for members to “participate in record numbers” in the pro-Trump protest in uniform other than their yellow and black clothes, according to the charge papers.
“We will fit in as one of you. . . We are going to smell like you, move like you and be like you. The only thing we will do is think like us! according to court documents, Biggs was released on or about the same day. The FBI said it was a taunt aimed at antifa, a far-left anti-fascist movement whose adherents sometimes engage in violent clashes with right-wing extremists.
That day, a live-stream Proud Boys video showed someone who appeared to be Biggs helping lead a group of dozens wearing blazing orange hats, camouflage backpacks and military-style vests, according to court documents. The Proud Boys group appeared to gather that morning on the east side of the building, then toured the building to join supporters of President Donald Trump’s grindstone on the Western Front at around 12:48 p.m.
Minutes later, the crowd surged forward, knocked down barricades and overwhelmed a handful of police, according to the FBI affidavit.
The FBI said Biggs and at least one person he was with appeared to be carrying walkie-talkie-type two-way communications devices.
Several others have been photographed or recorded with headphones, including Pezzola and others suspected of being associated with the Proud Boys, “who could be used to receive communications from other people in real time,” the FBI said. .
Biggs spoke with agents on Monday and admitted to entering the Capitol building without forcing entry, the FBI said.
Biggs informed an interviewer “that the doors of the Capitol are wide open,” the impeachment papers said. They said Biggs also “denied knowing any pre-planning for the Capitol assault and had no idea who planned it.”
Tarrio had planned to attend Trump’s rally on January 6, but was arrested upon his arrival in DC on charges of destroying property in connection with the burning of a Black Lives Matter banner taken from a black church at an earlier protest in Washington. He is also charged with criminal possession of two magazines of high capacity firearms.
Tarrio told the Washington Post last week that his group did not organize the siege on Capitol Hill.
“If they think we are organizing to go to Capitol Hill, unfortunately they are wrong,” he said. “Our plan was to stay together as a group and just enjoy the day. We weren’t going to do a night walk, something like that. It’s just as far away as it is today.