A federal jury has indicted an Arkansas man on a number of charges after he allegedly used a flag pole to beat a police officer during the January 6 attack on the Capitol.
Peter Stager, 41, is accused of using a dangerous or deadly weapon to “forcibly assault, resist, impose, impede, intimidate and interfere with an officer,” in Washington, DC, last month, according to an indictment unsealed on Wednesday.
Stager is facing a total of seven charges including entering and remaining in a restricted building or grounds with a deadly or dangerous weapon, and engaging in physical violence in a restricted building or grounds with a deadly or dangerous weapon, in connection to the attack.
Two of the charges against Stager—”obstruction of an official proceeding and aiding and abetting” and “assaulting, resisting, or impeding certain officers using a dangerous weapon”—carry a maximum penalty of 20 years in jail.
Stager was initially arrested on January 14 in Conway, Arkansas, on one count of obstructing a police officer from his duties during a civil disorder.
According to an FBI criminal complaint, Stager was part of the crowd of hundreds that gathered outside the Capitol building on January 6.
“Some of these individuals were throwing and swinging various objects at the group of law enforcement officers,” the affidavit states.
The complaint said that the Metropolitan Police Officer who was beaten by the mob, identified only as B.M, was attempting to stop the crowd from entering the building before they “dragged him down the stairs” of the Capitol.
“These individuals forced B.M. into a prone position on the stairs and proceeded to forcibly and repeatedly strike B.M. in the head and body with various objects,” the complaint said.
Images on social media allegedly capture the moment Stager used a flag pole to repeatedly strike the officer. Another image shows Stager with a pole in his hand while others nearby are seen beating the officer as lays face down on the ground.
In another video posted on Twitter, Stager speaks directly to the camera and states: “Everybody in there is a treasonous traitor. Death is the only remedy for what’s in that building.”
Stager is believed to have been referencing the Capitol building and the U.S. lawmakers inside at the time.
Stager was indicted along with two other men accused of assaulting police officers during the Capitol riot: Jeffrey Sabol of Colorado and Michael John Lopatic Sr. of Pennsylvania.
The indictment says the three suspects “willfully and knowingly engaged in an act of physical violence in the grounds of the U.S. Capitol building by assaulting Metropolitan Police Department officers stationed in the lower west terrace tunnel entryway to protect the U.S. Capitol building.”
Originally published at https://www.newsweek.com/capitol-riot-peter-stager-flag-police-1570513 on .