Los Angeles man sentenced to prison for role in Jan. 6 breach of U.S. Capitol building.
Edward Badalian, a 29-year-old Panorama City man has been sentenced to four years and three months in prison for his role in the breach of the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021.
Department of Justice Press Release
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Columbia
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, September 26, 2023
California Man Sentenced on Conspiracy and Other Charges Related to Jan. 6 Capitol Breach
Defendant Convicted of Joining Others in Planning and Carrying Out Attack on U.S. Capitol
WASHINGTON – A California man was sentenced in the District of Columbia today on two felony charges and one misdemeanor related to his actions during the Jan. 6, 2021, breach of the U.S. Capitol. His actions and the actions of others disrupted a joint session of the U.S. Congress convened to ascertain and count the electoral votes related to the 2020 presidential election.
Edward Badalian, 29, of Panorama City, California, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson to 51 months in prison, 36 months of supervised release, and ordered to pay $2,000 in restitution and fines. Badalian was convicted of conspiracy, obstruction of an official proceeding, and entering and remaining in a restricted building following a bench trial before Judge Jackson on April 4, 2023.
According to the evidence presented at trial, in the fall of 2020, Badalian, co-defendant Daniel Rodriguez, and others created a Telegram group chat titled PATRIOTS45MAGA Gang. The group, initially created to bring together supporters of former President Trump in the lead-up to the 2020 Presidential election, became a forum for Badalian and Rodriguez’s plans for violence against the seat of the federal government. In the group, Badalian and Rodriguez wrote hundreds of messages about war, revolution, traitors, and tyrants.
As early as the fall of 2020, after the results of the 2020 election came in, Badalian wrote in the Telegram group: “time to arrest biden lol” and the next day, making clear that he was calling for the use of violence, Badalian sent the group a photograph of an individual holding an assault rifle. He wrote, “stay strapped foo. its not a game anymore.” Days later, Badalian escalated from talk of arrests to calls for executions. On Nov. 9, 2020, Badalian wrote, “If theyre guilty of treason they should be executed,” adding, “Biden is definitely guilty of treason.”
Badalian would later call for members of the group to prepare and train for potential violence. On Dec. 6, 2020, Badalian wrote, “we cant plot anyones demise,” but, he continued, “the way is to train and train and one day when were all together in training, the decision has to be made and executed spontaneously as to whom we arrest.” After the group made arrangements to travel from California to Washington, D.C., for the January 6th proceedings, Badalian called upon other members of the group to prepare for their trip by partaking in paintball training exercises. Badalian wrote in the group, “We need to know how to fight together while under fire.” When another group member asked, “what are you training for exactly?” Badalian didn’t hesitate: “a firefight with armed terrorists.
On the morning of Jan. 6, 2021, Badalian and his group attended the Stop the Steal rally on the National Mall. After listening to the then-President’s speech, Badalian walked straight to the U.S. Capitol building. After illegally traversing the west front of the Capitol grounds, Badalian made his way to the Lower West Terrace. Here, Badalian cheered on rioters engaged in a heave-ho effort against police and then ascended a scaffolding overlooking the Upper West Terrace on the north side of the building. Once there, Badalian attempted to direct the crowd to the entrances on the Upper West Terrace.
Badalian then entered the Capitol building via a broken window on the Lower West Terrace. Once inside the building, Badalian stood side-by-side with other rioters, including Rodriguez, as they ransacked offices, broke down doors, and broke windows. Badalian later left the building after being forced out by law enforcement.
After the events of January 6th, Badalian took steps to hide the evidence of his actions that day. While driving back to California from Washington, D.C., Badalian and others in the group attempted to convince another individual to delete video and photographic evidence linking Badalian and others in the group to the events at the Capitol that day. Badalian and Rodriguez continued efforts to cover up their crimes in their Telegram group. Rodriguez directed members to abstain from posting “incriminating stuff.” As part of his efforts to cover up his crimes, Badalian replaced his cell phone and cell phone number after returning from Washington, D.C
The case was prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia and the Justice Department’s National Security Division prosecuted the case, with valuable assistance provided by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Central District of California.
The FBI’s Los Angeles and Washington Field Offices investigated this case, with valuable assistance from the Metropolitan Police Department and U.S. Capitol Police.
In the 32 months since Jan. 6, 2021, more than 1,100 individuals have been charged in nearly all 50 states for crimes related to the breach of the U.S. Capitol, including more than 396 individuals charged with assaulting or impeding law enforcement, a felony. The investigation remains ongoing.
Anyone with tips can call 1-800-CALL-FBI (800-225-5324) or visit tips.fbi.gov.
Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI)
USAO – California, Central
USAO – District of Columbia
Press Release Number:
Updated September 26, 2023