Rally Runner’ charged in connection to Jan. 6 riot at US Capitol. Daniel Donnelly Jr., was arrested in St. Louis, Missouri, according to court records.
Department of Justice Press Release
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Columbia
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, August 2, 2023
Missouri Man Arrested on Felony and Misdemeanor Charges for Actions During Jan. 6 Capitol Breach
Defendant Accused of Using Stolen Riot Shield to Push Back Police in Lower West Terrace Tunnel
WASHINGTON – A Missouri man has been arrested on felony and misdemeanor charges related to his actions during the breach of the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021. 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 presidential election.
Daniel Donnelly Jr., aka Rally Runner, 43, of St. Louis, is charged in a criminal complaint filed in the District of Columbia with a felony offense of civil disorder. In addition to the felony, Donnelly is charged with several misdemeanor offenses, including disorderly and disruptive conduct in a restricted building or grounds, disorderly conduct in a Capitol building, impeding passage through the Capitol grounds or buildings, and theft of government property.
Donnelly was arrested today in St. Louis and made his initial appearance in the Eastern District of Missouri.
According to court documents, Donnelly was identified via open-source video and other video footage as among the crowd of rioters gathered at the Lower West Terrace tunnel entrance to the Capitol building on Jan. 6, 2021. Donnelly was identified wearing red face paint, sunglasses, a red “Make America Great” hat, a red jacket, red pants or red shorts, and red high socks. Photos and video footage taken from closed-circuit television (CCTV) and open-source videos that day depict Donnelly making his way up through the crowd of rioters and into the tunnel. Before making his way into the entrance, Donnelly is seen helping the crowd pass a ladder into the tunnel.
At about 4:10 p.m., court documents say that Donnelly is seen with a police riot shield continuing to make his way into the tunnel and eventually arriving at the front of the crowd of rioters. Law enforcement officers then attempted to move the crowd back and out of the tunnel. Court documents say that at this time, Donnelly can be seen holding the stolen riot shield up to the law enforcement officers, forming a wall with other shields held by other rioters.
According to court documents, moments later, other rioters, using Donnelly as a shield, lunged past him to attack the officers. Donnelly continued to hold his position just inches away from the confrontation. Rioters continued to push forward as a group, with Donnelly in the lead. Video footage depicts Donnelly at the front of the line using the shield to aid in the advancement of the rioters by pushing law enforcement officers back. Eventually, Donnelly lost the shield when additional law enforcement officers came to the tunnel and began moving the rioters out.
Court documents say that later that day, on January 6th, Donnelly posted a video on his Facebook page in which he admitted to being at the U.S. Capitol. In the video, Donnelly states, in part, “I get a riot shield, and I’m not trying to cause any violence, but I’m trying to be the furthest person to get through all the way, or at least get the furthest” and “I took up a lot of space, and I had the rioter shield, and I was right up there, and for some reason, like, the other people up there on the front lines with me, they did something similar…. It’s like they followed my lead, kind of.”
This case is being prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia and the Department of Justice National Security Division’s Counterterrorism Section. Valuable assistance was provided by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Missouri.
This case is being investigated by the FBI’s St. Louis and Washington Field Offices. Valuable assistance was provided by the U.S. Capitol Police and the Metropolitan Police Department.
In the 30 months since Jan. 6, 2021, more than 1,069 individuals have been arrested in nearly all 50 states for crimes related to the breach of the U.S. Capitol, including more than 350 individuals charged with assaulting or impeding law enforcement. The investigation remains ongoing.
Anyone with tips can call 1-800-CALL-FBI (800-225-5324) or visit tips.fbi.gov.
A complaint is merely an allegation, and all defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.
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Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI)
USAO – District of Columbia
USAO – Missouri, Eastern
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