An Iowa man and apparent QAnon adherent has been convicted of five felony and two misdemeanor charges in connection with the Jan. 6, 2021 breach of the U.S. Capitol Complex, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia announced on Friday.
A jury agreed that Douglas Austin Jensen, 43, of Des Moines, was guilty of the following felonies: (1) assaulting, resisting, or impeding a law enforcement officer, (2) obstruction of an official proceeding, (3) interfering with a law enforcement officer during a civil disorder, (4) entering and remaining in a restricted building or grounds with a dangerous weapon, and (5) disorderly and disruptive conduct in a restricted building or grounds with a dangerous weapon.
The jury also found Jensen guilty of two misdemeanor offenses: (1) disorderly conduct in a Capitol building and (2) parading, demonstrating, or picketing in a Capitol building.
Prosecutors said that Jensen “illegally entered the U.S. Capitol grounds at approximately 2 p.m.” wearing “a distinctive black shirt with a large ‘Q’ emblazoned on the chest.”
From there, the jury agreed that Jensen scaled a wall, “watched as a mob broke the windows and doors at the Senate Wing entrance, and was the 10th person inside the Capitol Building,” according to the DOJ.
A statement of facts attached to an original charging document in the matter depicts the scene:
As the crowd moved forward, a lone Capitol Police officer ordered JENSEN to stop and put his hands up. Rather than comply with the order, JENSEN led the crowd toward the officer in a menacing manner, causing the officer to retreat and repeat his commands. JENSEN continued to lead the crowd toward the officer. When the retreating officer reached a staircase, the officer turned and ran up a flight of stairs in an attempt to get to back up. The video footage captures JENSEN chasing the officer up the stairs and shouting at the officer. Twice more, the officer orders JENSEN to stop and raises his hand to keep JENSEN from advancing. Both times JENSEN continued to advance in a menacing manner, with the crowd following behind him, forcing the officer to continue to retreat. The officer was able to retreat to an area occupied by several additional Capitol Police officers, at which point the officers were able to stop JENSEN and the rest of the crowd from advancing.
The Department of Justice continued:
Once he got inside, Jensen hastily rounded a few corners until he found himself in a crowd that halted when they encountered a Capitol Police officer by the East Grand Stairs. He squeezed himself to the front of the pack to face off with the officer. Ignoring commands to stop, he then chased the officer up the East Grand Stairs to the Ohio Clock corridor just outside the Senate Chamber. There, he demanded that officers “back up” and that they arrest Vice President Pence. Jensen was forced to leave the Capitol after about 40 minutes, but reentered through the East Rotunda Doors, and was again forced to leave the building.
Jensen allegedly carried a “knife with a three-inch blade” in his pocket, the DOJ said.
The defendant was arrested just two days after the capitol breach in Des Moines, Iowa. The statement of facts explains how that arrest occurred; Jensen, in essence, was quickly identified via a video published by The Guardian.
On January 8, 2021, JENSEN turned himself in to the Des Moines Police Department and said that he wanted to talk to someone because he thought he was in trouble. An FBI Special Agent and a Detective from the Des Moines Police Department interviewed JENSEN in an interview room at the station. Prior to conducting the interview, JENSEN was informed that the interview was being conducted voluntarily at his request, and that he was free to leave. JENSEN was also informed that the interview was being recorded. During the course of the interview JENSEN admitted that he was the person seen in the video published on The Guardian. JENSEN specifically admitted chasing the Capitol Police officer up the stairs, and that he refused to obey the officer’s lawful orders. JENSEN stated that he intentionally positioned himself to be among the first people inside the United States Capitol because he was wearing his “Q” t-shirt and he wanted to have his t-shirt seen on video so that “Q” could “get the credit.”
Later, in a bid to get out of jail before trial, Jensen’s attorneys claimed their client repudiated the QAnon conspiracy theory. In a June 2021 court filing, Jensen claimed he became “a victim” of nefarious false conspiracy theories he no longer believed at that point.
Jensen was also caught on what appears to be a self-recorded video mistaking the U.S. Capitol for the White House.
Sentencing is scheduled for Dec. 16, 2022.
The DOJ said the felonies could carry a maximum of 53 years in prison plus fines; the misdemeanors naturally carry a potential maximum of one year in jail plus fines. It is rare for federal defendants to be sentenced to maximum punishments.
“In the 20 months since Jan. 6, 2021, more than 870 individuals have been arrested in nearly all 50 states for crimes related to the breach of the U.S. Capitol, including over 265 individuals charged with assaulting or impeding law enforcement,” the DOJ noted. “The investigation remains ongoing.”
The original criminal complaint, the statement of facts, and all four indictments against Jensen are embedded below for reference:
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