A New Hampshire man was ordered to stay out of Washington, D.C., until after Joe Biden’s swearing-in as the next president after he was accused of participating in the violent riot inside the nation’s Capitol inspired by President Trump.
Thomas R. Gallagher, who was arrested by FBI agents Wednesday night, wore an orange prison jumper issued at a New Hampshire jail where he was taken following his arrest during a tele-hearing held Thursday held by the US District Court in New Hampshire.
Gallagher was polite during the hearing before Magistrate Judge Andrea K. Johnstone, who was deciding whether to order Gallagher to stay behind bars and transfer him to Washington while awaiting trial.
However, Assistant US Attorney Georgiana MacDonald told Johnstone prosecutors were not going to ask that the 61-year-old Gallagher be detained pending trial. He was arrested while on the House side of the Capital Jan. 6 along with other rioters.
No new information about Gallagher’s actions were disclosed during the hearing. He is charged with violent entry and disorderly conduct on Capitol grounds, and illegally entering the Capitol building or grounds “with intent to impede government business or official functions,” according to federal court records.
Johnstone released Gallagher on personal recognizance and ordered him to stay out of Washington until at least Jan. 22, which is when he is scheduled to appear at US District Court on his pending charges.
“The defendant shall not enter the District of Columbia for any reason” prior to Jan. 22, Johnstone wrote.
Gallagher, who lives in Bridgewater, N.H., was represented by Jeffrey S. Levin from the federal Public Defenders Office. A relative of the family said Gallagher has no comment.
Gallagher was arrested on the second floor of the Capitol on Jan. 6 by Capitol Police and was later issued a ticket requiring him to appear in Washington, D.C.’s, version of a state court. But, signaling the determination of federal prosecutors and law enforcement to hold rioters accountable, Gallagher’s case is now being given increased attention in the federal system.
He was arrested by Capitol Police around 3 p.m. on Jan. 6 and was initially told he would be prosecuted in the Washington, D.C., Superior Court. But last Friday, he was identified as one of a list of 13 people federal officials said would be tried in federal court in D.C., according to court records.
According to a report filed by Capitol Police Officer Joseph Bruno, thousands of Trump supporters surrounded the Capitol around 2 p.m. on Jan. 6 as Congress was preparing to certify the Electoral College victory of Democrat Joe Biden as the 46th president.
Around 2:20 p.m., the rioters, following a speech by President Trump, broke through windows and doors and forced their way into the sprawling complex. Some 40 minutes later, Bruno joined other officers responding to a “disturbance involving several dozen people” on the second floor.
“I observed members of the crowd engage in conduct such as making loud noises, and kicking chairs, throwing an unknown liquid substance at officers, and spraying an unknown substance at officers,’' he wrote, adding that police ordered the people to leave in loud and clear voices.
It had no effect, Bruno wrote. “Instead they responded by shouting and cursing at the Capitol Police Officers. The crowd, which at the time was located on the upper level of the United States Capitol Visitor Center near the door to the House Atrium,” included Gallagher and five others.
He wrote that Gallagher and the five others “were positioned towards the front of the crowd, close to the Capitol Police Officers who were responding, and to the officer who issued the order to leave. The six individuals, like others in the larger crowd, willfully refused the order to leave. "
Gallagher and the five other people were arrested. The five others were identified by federal officials as Cindy Fitchett, Michael Curzio, Douglas Sweet, Terry Brown, and Bradley Rukstales.